The purpose of this event is to bring together people with all types of disabilities who are interested in developing and sharing leadership skills. In order to have our voices heard and respected, we must create stronger networks for sharing and supporting one another. Kentucky has a few self-advocacy groups, but they tend to be small and disconnected from one another. We are hoping that the unconference will help to create some stronger bonds and help us all to think about new ways to work together on issues of importance to our communities.
The unconference format is a great equalizer. There is a structure behind the apparent lack of structure that encourages participation by those who may have found themselves disempowered in more formal settings. There is a strong sense of ownership and connection that comes from the shared responsibility of creating and leading sessions. It is an approach very well suited to the discussion of self-advocate leadership. —Bev Harp