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First Birmingham Disability Festival (BDF)


Run of a Kind. Photo courtesy of the Festival organisers.


The first Birmingham Disability Festival (BDF) is to take place in the City of Birmingham during Disability Pride Month – a time to celebrate being proud of being disabled   The Festival is FREE to attendees and takes place at the Curzon Building, Birmingham City University (near to Millennium Point) on Saturday 6 July between 12 noon and 4pm and is fully accessible. 

Preview


Created by Birmingham Disability Festival Committee (BDFC), this free inaugural event showcases a wide range of disabled talent through performances, sport, interactive games and disabled business owners and aims to advance diversity, equity and inclusion in the UK’s second city.


The Festival features a packed day of events including live performances, arts and crafts, a ‘Human Library’ featuring key speakers, invaluable networking opportunities and essential resources to empower disabled people to thrive in their future life.


Highlights of the Festival include; dance performances from wheelchair based Freewheelin and Cerebral Palsy West Midlands, and music from DJ Ben Linstead, a wheelchair user who has a regular set at Birmingham’s famous The Night Owl.


Games and sports for people of all abilities will also be on offer including boccia, curling, blind football, volleyball, wheelchair basketball and RUN OF A KIND, Birmingham’s first and only Running Tour Team, will be providing a tour for blind/visually impaired runners and a disability friendly walking tour.


Wheelchair basketball. Photo courtesy of the Festival organisers.


Attendees can take part in workshops including: Ways for Wellbeing UK and Birmingham Metropolitan (BMet) College's nature and wellbeing workshops around the themes of planting; and Tai Chi and on the spot muscle therapy from Release and Repair’s Roland Baskerville.  Running alongside these events is a dedicated marketplace featuring a variety of organisations run by people with disabilities who will be sharing their experiences and services.


Nabila Gardner, Director at Ways for Wellbeing UK CIC a health and wellbeing coaching organisation led by disabled women said, “We are very proud to lead the coordination of the first Festival of its kind in Birmingham. We know what it is like to not be seen and recognised for our work. We want to motivate others like us to see how they can make a difference just by being who they are and doing what they do.  We all have different ways of being included in our world and we are proud that we do things differently.”




The day will also feature a ‘Human Library’ where people can attend discussions with keynote speakers. The ‘Human Library’ is facilitated by Dr Shani Dhanda the multi-award-winning disability inclusion and accessibility specialist, social entrepreneur and broadcaster (Loose Women, This Morning). The ‘Human Library’ also includes, amongst others, Dr Amo Raju, Amit Ghose, Charlie Fogarty MBE., Alice Hargreaves and Charlotte Berisford. 


Dr Dhanda, said, " We welcome everyone to join this joyful event – a celebration of our community's achievements and a source of empowerment for future generations."

 

Birmingham Disability Festival is organised by Festival partners Ways for Wellbeing UK CIC, BMet College, Birmingham City University, SCCB, Arts Therapies UK, Augmented Lifestyle CIC, Sakeenah Foundation.


BMet College commented, “BMet is proud to be part of the city’s first Birmingham Disability Festival. It marks an important step for us to showcase disabled talent in Birmingham, celebrate our diverse identities, as well as supporting the ongoing work to improve experiences and outcomes for our disabled people.”


Birmingham City University Vice Chancellor Professor David Mba added, “BCU  is delighted to join forces with Birmingham Disability Festival (BDF) to host this inaugural and extremely important event. Inclusion and diversity are at the heart of our University, as is our determination to continue fostering close working relationships with the city of Birmingham and its people. 


“Occasions like this allow us to make those connections run even deeper. We look forward to welcoming everyone to our City Centre Campus on Saturday 6 July and playing a key role in the event’s success. It promises to be an action-packed day.”


The first Birmingham Disability Festival is free to attendees and takes place at the Curzon Building, Birmingham City University (near to Millennium Point) on Saturday 6 July between 12 noon and 4pm and is fully accessible. 


British Sign Language interpreters and quiet spaces will be available. Assistance dogs are fully welcomed. Food and drink and seating areas on site. Festival organisers will be present throughout the day for information and guidance.

Free parking at Millennium Point car park is available for blue badge holders. Whether travelling by train, bus, tram or car, please check for delays, cancellations or road closures ahead of your journey. 


Although the event is free, attendees will need to register for a ticket. For more information and to register your attendance please go to the following link:- 

 For further information please email birminghamdisabilityfestival@gmail.com

 


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