On November the 9th, a group of professionals and volunteers from all over Somerset came together to take part in a full-day, in-person workshop, hosted by The Somerset Parent Carer Forum with help from Engagement and Participation from Somerset Council. It was a fantastic day, filled with empathetic discussion and powerful storytelling.
Following on from the online training sessions, the workshop saw around 40 individuals from all sorts of sectors spend the day together at William’s Village Hall in Stoke st Gregory. Alongside the informative presentation lead by the Parent Carer Forum, several workshops and activities were held. These helped to equip the Champions with the necessary skills and knowledge to bring inclusive practice into their work and everyday lives, and delved into what inclusion encompasses, and how individuals and groups can promote inclusion.
There was a lot of interesting and important conversation around challenging stereotypes and beliefs, having difficult conversations, allyship, and lived experience. A Social Contract was drawn up with intentions and attitudes set for the day, and Erin, one of Somerset Council’s supported Employees, and member of the Unstoppables, shared her powerful poem and own experience with the group. You can read the poem here.
The day was a great success, with feedback stating that they felt more equipped to bring Inclusive practice into both their work and personal lives. While this work is not always easy, it was inspiring to see so many engaged and passionate about championing inclusion and the rights of all.
Thank you to the Parent Carer Forum and colleagues at Somerset Council for creating and hosting this training. This round of recruitment for Inclusion Champions is now closed, but you can find out more and register you interest by visiting Somerset Inclusion Champions.