The representative of the NGO Mladiinfo Montenegro, Lorena Ujkić, participated in the training “Art of Inclusion”, which was held in Poland from 11th till 18th September.
Participants in the training were from different countries: Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Malta, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Germany, Ukraine, Belarus, the Netherlands, Georgia, Spain, Northern Macedonia and Greece. Everyone was given the opportunity to present the situation in their country and to share their experience when it comes to people with disabilities. In the beginning, various introductory activities were done in order to bring the participants closer, which was very successful. The main topic of the training was the inclusion of people with disabilities in everyday activities. For this reason, participants learned to use La Joëlette, off-road equipment that allows people with reduced mobility to go hiking. One day was reserved for going to the Isera Mountains, where with the help of this equipment they took with them a guy with a disability, who got the opportunity to go hiking for the first time in his life. Also, the participants had the opportunity to meet the winner of the Paralympic Games, listen to her story and ask her what interests them. In order to understand what it is like to have a complete visual impairment, as part of one of the activities, everyone wore a blindfold during and after lunch. They had to rely on other people to help them move in space, and through exercise, they improved their sense of hearing and touch. For many, this was a new and very emotional experience. The most important message was that instead of creating special activities for people with disabilities and separating them from others, we simply find more inclusive solutions on how to include them in everyday activities. Instead of leaving people with disabilities at home when we go on hiking tours, we need to normalize to simply say that a person with a disability is with us and to reserve equipment for that person. It will take a long time to get there, but that is why this project has started, and a large number of activities are already underway. La Joëlette is a small but revolutionary step towards the inclusion of people with disabilities.