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Stephanie Howell, uScreen participant

Legacy Medal 2: Accentuate Will Continue to Inspire the Next Generation

Accentuate, will pursue its work to inspire the next generation, and is set to reinforce its position as an international leader in providing opportunities for young deaf and disabled people.

During 2013, Accentuate will develop new projects, building on its achievements towards creating a cultural shift in the way disabled people are seen. In this medal we look at Accentuate Young Voices, a project that will draw on the success of the uScreen website. With its groundbreaking accessibility features, uScreen has succeeded in giving young, deaf & disabled people a voice in our increasingly digital online world.   

Accentuate Young Voices will be a new area of work for Accentuate but will build upon the best of several projects within Accentuate.  At its core, Accentuate Young Voices will utilise the uScreen web resources and develop film as the media through which young people can share their voices, thoughts and ideas.  Accentuate Young Voices will work on a national scale – operating in 5 areas across the UK – whilst also being made available as a toolkit and resource to a global audience.

Based on the theme of “change”, Accentuate Young Voices will develop a series of five films, each interviewing a prominent disabled person from different cultural sectors (film, art, heritage, sport, tourism). These films will look at  the topic of change, with proposed questions including “What has changed in attitudes since you were young?”, “How have your views about society and disability changed as you’ve got older?”, “What further change needs to happen in our world to make things different?”, “What are some of the most effective mechanisms that can deliver change?”.  The resulting films will then be utilised in an accredited programme in five selected school or youth group settings in the UK, working with young disabled and non-disabled young people.  Through workshops delivered by film practitioners, young people will then be shown how to make their own films and work with their peers on the uScreen website, to explore their own thoughts about change.

In addition to this “live” work, an online resource will be developed for teachers, youth leaders and uScreen champions. This resource will take the form of a toolkit, which will be available initially free of charge on the website and marketed through a range of both social media and traditional channels. 

Accentuate Young Voices will utilise Screen South’s existing international contacts and will build new ones through the uScreen website (e.g. a South African university is currently using the site) in order to develop the international debate.  The films submitted will inform, and be part of, the Accentuate Symposium and some of the best films will be shown and the young directors invited to share their thoughts at the debate.

The Accentuate Ideas Hub (previously Our View Core Group) will work alongside the Accentuate Young Voices team to help identify methods for young people to engage and share their stories with older more experienced disabled people as well as inputting into the Symposium.   There is also likely to be synergies between sharing the heritage of older disabled people through the Accentuate Heritage project.

“Many of these programmes – especially Driving Inspiration and uScreen - have engaged young people, disabled and non-disabled, and have I believe created experiences that will leave a legacy in terms of young people’s understanding of what it means, the lived experience of having impairments and chronic health conditions of various sorts. I think this will combat prejudice and influence how those individuals will view disabled people in the future.” Colin Hambrook, Disability Arts Online.

Accentuate is the London 2012 Legacy Programme for the South East.  Accentuate has been funded by Legacy Trust UK, creating a lasting impact from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games by funding ideas and local talent to inspire creativity across the UK, SEEDA and the Regional Cultural Agencies.

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