Disability Awareness Week returns to campus

Every October since 2007, Cosumnes River College has celebrated Disability Awareness Week and this year it will continue, on Oct. 17.

Students In Free Enterprise are partnering with Disability Support Programs & Services said they are partnering to host the event in order to inform people about disabilities.

“Holding a Disability Awareness Week can bring more understanding of disabilities and people with disabilities, which is always beneficial,” said Learning Disability Specialist and DSPS Counselor Scott Hamilton. “Most people are not aware of the effects a disability can have in some people’s lives and also that in most ways people with disabilities are exactly the same as people without disabilities, so events to highlight disability can help raise that awareness.”

There will be events going on throughout the week.

There will be a website launch in the library lobby Oct. 17, according to CRC SIFE Chief Financial Officer and Project Director Jamila Jolby. The website will contain information on this year’s Disability Awareness Week.

There will be Adopt a Disability Day on Oct. 18, a new event this year where staff and faculty members will adopt a disability for around four hours. They will go through their day with limitations and see what it is like to live with a disability.

On Oct. 18 there will also be an inspirational film “Emmanuels Gift,” about a Ghanaian man born with a severely deformed leg. Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah’s Mission and purpose is to change all of that forever. The film is narrated by Oprah Winfrey and shows original footage of Emmanuel throughout his journey. It will be shown in room 104 of the Learning Resource Center at 1:30 p.m.

The Disability Awareness Resource Fair will take place on Oct. 19 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the quad.

United Cerebral Palsy, Special Olympics and the Department of Rehabilitation will be attending the event, Jolby said. Many counseling services and disability organizations will provide information about mental and physical disabilities and a speaker from the Mind Institute in Sacramento will also attend this event.

The last event for this year’s Disability Awareness Week will be an open house on Oct. 20 to give students more information on DSPS and their services that are available for students.

Faculty said they support events like this because “many people don’t know much about disabilities or the disabled.”

“If it helps one person to understand what it’s like for someone with a disability then the event is a hit in my opinion,” said Adapted Physical Education Professor Jeanne Calamar. “We as a society have come a long way from where we used to be, but we still have room for improvement.

“I can remember when people in wheelchairs were treated like second class citizens. If they went somewhere, no one on the street would acknowledge them or even look them in the eye. That is not okay in my book.”
To find out more information about this event, visit the CRC website.