L'Arche Atlanta is partnering with the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities (GCDD) to lead the GCDD Storytelling Advocacy Project. This year The Storytelling Advocacy Project will produce a mini-documentary to amplify the voices of four Georgians living with a developmental disability. The life experiences of people living with developmental disabilities are often not included in policy conversations or known to the larger public. The mini-doc will serve as an opportunity for people to learn about the dreams, struggles, and barriers their Georgia neighbors encounter and how state policy is directly linked to the paths both open and closed to them.
The other Storytelling Projects happening this year are a seven-episode podcast, called Hidden Voices, exploring themes of disability in Georgia and 25 deep dive stories from the 75 we collected in 2018.
For this year-long project L’Arche has teamed up with project managers Resurgens Impact Consulting, writers StoryMuse and Rasheera Dopson, and photographers Lynsey Weatherspoon and Haylee Anne Fucin-Lenkey, and Kelly Blackmon. The podcast is a collarboration between FRQNCY Media and ListnUp Radio. The mini-doc is a collaboration between filmmakers Michael McDonald and Rhyme & Reason.
2018 Storytelling Project Impact
Between December 1, 2017 and November 30, 2018, the project team completed 75 stories capturing the experiences, dreams, and challenges of people with developmental disabilities across the state of Georgia.
Over 235 individuals, groups, and organizations were contacted through outreach activities
The project team captured stories from 53 of the state’s 56 senate districts.
85 individuals with developmental disabilities participated in the project
98 family members participated in the project
79 participants were identified as being willing to speak to their elected officials and/or the media to advocate for people with developmental disabilities
The project team completed 150 stories (75 long form and 75 short form) and submitted 869 photographs
89% of people who completed the follow-up satisfaction survey said they were very satisfied . 80% also said that “Through participation in the Storytelling Project, I am better able to say what I want, or say what services and supports I want, or say what is important to me.”
You can read some of the stories, in GCDD's Making a Difference magazine. You can find digital issues of the magazine here.
About Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities The Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities, a federally funded state agency, works to bring about social and policy changes that promote opportunities for persons with developmental disabilities and their families to live, learn, work, play and worship in Georgia communities. Learn more at www.gcdd.org.