I have been seeing Tweets, articles, and blog post about the Disability Visibility Project for several weeks, and thought about posting something about it. Then, out of the blue, the project’s coordinator, Alice Wong, contacted me about being a “media partner”, which I am very glad to do.
What is the Disability Visibility Project? The project’s website explains it best:
"The project’s purpose is to collect stories from Americans with disabilities and have them archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. Starting July 2014 to July 2015, anyone going to one of StoryCorps’ three locations can contribute their oral history in celebration of the upcoming 25th anniversary of the ADA. By tagging their interview as part of the Disability Visibility Project, they will become part of a collection of stories from the disability community. Having these stories recorded and available to the public will preserve disability history, making them accessible to all."
"The Disability Visibility project is a community partnership with StoryCorps. StoryCorps is an independent nonprofit whose mission is to provide people of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives. StoryCorps partners with the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress, and with National Public Radio with whom they have a weekly broadcast every Friday on Morning Edition."
On a personal note, I have been listening to StoryCorps programs on NPR for many years. I think it’s a great idea to make a concerted effort like this to get peoples’ disability stories included in this massive and growing audio archive of everyday peoples’ stories. If you are reading this blog, chances are you already like reading the thoughts and stories from disabled people, and maybe you share some of your own stories, too. This is another way to do that, in a somewhat higher profile way.
Even if you can’t get to a StoryCorps location, you can help by boosting the information to other bloggers, blog readers, Facebook friends, Tweeters, and other people you regularly reach through social media. Plus, this is a year-long project, so who knows? StoryCorps could come to you one of these days!