The Art of Inclusion: A Guide – the McMichael Canadian Art Collection makes accessible initiatives sustainable

It has been over two years since the McMichael Canadian Art Collection launched their prestigious EnAbling Change Project with support from the Government of Ontario. Two years of testing the waters with programs designed for people living with various special needs and exceptionalities. Programs for people of all ages, genders and ethnicities. Programs for people that visit the Collection for its unique atmosphere that merges art and nature. Programs that offer a different method of feeling like you belong. Programs that teach us the true meaning of “inclusion” and how it can be achieved through creative practices.

With all of this in consideration, it is my great pleasure to share with you The Art of Inclusion: A Guide – Seven Steps to Developing and Delivering Accessible and Inclusive Programs within Arts and Cultural Organizations.

This publication is the result of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection’s EnAbling Change project with the Government of Ontario, and outlines a seven-step process (a nod to the Group of Seven painters) for the successful design and delivery of accessible programs.

The Art of Inclusion: A Guide - Seven Steps to Developing and Delivering Accessible and Inclusive Programs within Arts and Cultural Organizations

The Art of Inclusion: A Guide – Seven Steps to Developing and Delivering Accessible and Inclusive Programs within Arts and Cultural Organizations – click the image to be redirected to the guide.

 

The goal of the publication is to provide a guide that will assist other arts and culture organizations in developing and implementing their own accessible initiatives, and to demonstrate the overall benefits of engaging visitors through specialized programs.

With the invaluable support of partner organizations, service providers, and industry contacts, the McMichael gained a wealth of knowledge that has allowed the gallery to offer a variety of programs to individuals with disabilities. Now, we wish to share what we have learned with others.

By offering these guidelines, the McMichael hopes that other organizations will follow the seven steps and ultimately create a more engaging and participatory cultural setting for individuals with special needs.

The guide is available to download online at: mcmichael.com/artofinclusion

We encourage you to spread the word about our accessible guide!

With enthusiasm,

Ola Mazzuca
Project Coordinator, Enabling Change
McMichael Canadian Art Collection

 

World Autism Awareness Day in Canada

Tuesday April 2 was World Autism Awareness Day! Canada celebrated for the first time. Last October, a bill was passed by members of the House of Commons to officially recognize this date in our glorious country, honoring Autism Spectrum Disorder all every individual affected.

Toronto celebrated World Autism Awareness Day by lighting it up blue at the CN Tower!

In 2007, The United Nations General Assembly declared April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day, bringing awareness to Autism Spectrum Disorder and all of those affected. But Autism awareness shouldn’t be scheduled to spread on one select day. We should be advocating every day, every where, all the time. Engage friends, families, neighbours and colleagues to get involved in their community with organizaitons like Autism Ontario or Autism Speaks.

Two years ago, Autism Speaks launched Light It Up Blue, a bright campaign to honor autism awareness. Major buildings, stadiums and monuments around the world light up to celebrate this unique disorder.