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Brittany

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Disability Awareness Week (Dawn/WD) continues the long tradition of National Access Awareness Week to promote greater community accessibility for those with disabilities. The week’s creation coincided with the formation the National Disability Act (NDA). The goal was to increase access to libraries and other public institutions for disabled people. However, the event is now largely celebrated for its advocacy of universal access for all. It evolved into a media-related week and featured celebrity guest-hosts like Oprah Winfrey or Julia Roberts.

 

The NDA has been a great source of support for those with disabilities and their families. DAW encourages employers and other organizations to make reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities. This includes the provision of equipment or services that are specialized. In order for these accommodations to be recognized, they must be supported by the employer and implemented by a third-party agency. Employers must also take action against discrimination based upon disability. These two requirements make inclusion and awareness of disability more important than ever.

disability awareness

 

The NDA provides a significant venue for individuals with disabilities to voice their concerns and petition laws and policies that would benefit them. It is also a platform for organizations to increase disability awareness and participation. Although the week was originally intended to raise awareness about the problems facing the disabled world, evidence suggests that it is gaining momentum and bringing more attention to issues that are related to disability awareness. A trend that was noticed following the passage and investment in disability awareness organizations was increased interest and investment.

 

Increased awareness of disability issues through media and other venues has had a positive impact on the larger focus on disability awareness. In addition, organizations that specialize in disability awareness activities have come to realize that there is a substantial cost involved in reaching those who are most likely to be interested in their program. While some organizations are involved in fundraising activities to pay for conferences and trainings, others have moved on from this. In many cases, the push to fundraise has been due to the realization that a large percentage of the revenue of these organizations is used to support programs that directly benefit people with disabilities. These organizations have known for a long time that they need a diverse source of income.

 

Many organizations that deal with disabilities have developed fundraising strategies that are more sustainable and equitable to meet the increasing demand for finance. Some have gone to the extent of developing programs that provide matching funds to those organizations that adopt specific principles and those that choose to participate in a program or donate to specific projects. Additionally, organizations that take part in fundraising activities have reported greater accessibility to clients and members who have special needs and disabilities. Programs to raise awareness are also highly effective in engaging clients and members with specific disabilities and needs. One program for a South Chicago Illinois charity found that its revenue increased dramatically after it started a campaign for funds to support single mothers’ daycare.

 

When it comes to disability awareness and the importance of raising awareness, there are a number of disability-specific strategies that have proven effective. For instance, organizations that train participants on disability etiquette found that requests for assistance were met with an appropriate response from those with whom they interact. Smaller organizations that focus on positive disability etiquette can also build a greater base of volunteers who can be contacted for assistance when needed. These organizations show appreciation for their volunteers and show concern for the success of their program by including disability awareness in all aspects. It gives people the opportunity to be involved in something they enjoy, which builds trust and increases the likelihood of them returning for more fundraising events.

 

As stated previously, disability awareness and disability etiquette go beyond simply showing disabled people how to behave. A fundraiser’s success depends on how well the organization can reach out to people who may not be part of the group or understand its mission. Organizations that understand disability etiquette or disability awareness offer comprehensive programs that help potential donors and volunteers to become more familiar with the dynamics and interactions of the disabled community. These programs teach disability etiquette and provide information on how to build relationships with the disabled community. In order to raise money for disability awareness programs, they include harmless jokes as well as activities that require volunteers how to communicate with and overcome differences. Additionally, disability awareness programs provide information on physical limitations, sensory impairments and the effects of aging.

 

These programs aim to make potential donors and volunteer feel at ease with the idea of supporting a cause that helps people with disabilities. Participants are encouraged to share their experiences and learn from others during the event. Although organizations may be flexible regarding what they require to run successful fundraisers, they cannot overlook disability awareness or disability etiquette. Without these two essential elements, there is no success. Failure to include these essential components can lead to organizations being seen as exclusionary, and thus alienating a specific clientele. This can lead to frustration, which in turn leads to many participants turning away from fundraising events.

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