(KMAland) — “Worlds Imagined” is the theme of this year’s campaign for Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month – which is March. Disabled Iowans and their advocates hope the public will pay more attention to their creative work.
The campaign aims to promote the daily contributions of people with disabilities, they say, and how communities can be inclusive to help them achieve their goals. Diane Glass, author of Des Moineswho was born with spina bifida, said she hopes her latest collection of poetry will resonate on two key fronts.
“I think this creative approach can hopefully give people with disabilities a different perspective on their situation,” Glass said, “and can help the general public understand that people with disabilities are a wonderful resource.”
Over the past decade, arts organizations and agencies have recognized people with disabilities are underrepresented in the performing and visual arts. This includes participation, employment and even attendance at shows.
As part of the campaign, Iowa Developmental Disabilities Council Accepts Submissions creations and testimonials this month to share with the public.
Adam Reynolds, a Des Moines resident with cerebral palsy, described photography as his passion. On social networks, he shares a series of photosthe city center being his favorite place.
“I do day and night shots of the capital and of, you know, a lot of buildings,” Reynolds said.
He said he hopes one day he can expand his audience in other ways. Reynolds said her ultimate goal was to secure enough funding to open her own gallery.
But to get there, he said he needed more support from influential voices in the arts scene and the community at large, to help him achieve his dreams.