Over the holidays, we received this inspiring story from our friends at the Foundation for Respect Ability. It is a great example of inclusion, so they were kind enough to let us share it with you. By supporting the Project and spreading the word about inclusion, you are helping make inclusion the expectation, not the exception among children AND adults!
“Waiting for a class of Kindergartners in their classroom the other day, I was touched to witness a boy who was visually impaired being escorted into class by his five-year-old buddy and led delicately to the sink so that he could wash his hands. His buddy patiently guided the boy through the process with care and concern and then led him slowly to the carpet in front of me. Soon the rest of the class filed in and joined him there, including a second boy with visual impairments who reached towards me as he passed me when he heard the sound of my guitar. He touched my shoulder and worked his way up to the fretboard of my guitar, fascinated by what he heard and felt. His buddy tried to move him along but the boy started drumming his hands on the guitar strings in a perfectly rhythmic and lively manner and the kids started to laugh. I just kept playing and it turned into a spontaneous jam session unlike any I’d ever experienced. Then the whole class jumped up and started dancing to our music and the teachers started clapping their hands.
It was a totally unexpected moment of pure joy and this child just lit up with a huge smile and an energy that I will never forget. We all applauded him and I proceeded with my session of songs and dialogue about respect and tolerance. But the most significant part of my session was the way these two children were accepted and included and treated by their classmates.
For me it was a glimpse into the goodness of people and the potential for the coming generation to be a whole lot kinder than the one we’re living in today.”, Sid Krupkin, Director of Education at the Foundation for Respect Ability.
Pictures from the Foundation for Respect Ability performance at our 2013 Champions Gala