January 2010

This survey is due in by this evening. Enter and you’ll be in with a chance to win an ipod!

And tonight, I’m speaking at this event “Supporting Students with Disabilities in a Recession” and hope to see you there.

Following on from yesterday’s post on our Mental Wellbeing conference, I wanted to point out that DCU in conjunction with Amnesty International is conducting a study: ‘Exploring the experience of discrimination as reported by people with mental health difficulties’ You can find out more here

Access for All is a four part Sound and Vision funded series that looks at the concerns of the disabled community in Dublin. Each episode took up a particular issue from the viewpoint of people with disabilities. The aim of the series was to facilitate individuals and the wider disabled community to become more visible through the process of making the series. It’s now available online here

AHEAD has a youtube channel where we’ve uploaded our information & training dvds and also anything we’ve managed to film over the last few years. You can find it here. Many are available with subtitling and signlanguage interpretation from us and I’ll try to upload those versions as well.

I use facebook to post links, stories of interest etc most of the time, but if you’re not a user of facebook, I’ll try to link some of them here, once a week. If you are on facebook, but haven’t signed up to the page, do!

For commentary, personal perspectives, information, and entertainment, I’m a huge fan of BBC Ouch. It’s something a little different for your weekend!

Yesterday in Dublin Castle WAM hosted a conference: “Mental Wellbeing in the Workplace: Minding your own business” It was a very interesting morning, with Lucy Fallon Byrne opening the conference, with the policy overview formed by the National Centre for Partnership Performance. She was followed by Professor Ivan Robertson and the Gareth O’Callaghan spoke of his personal experience. Even thought it was my work, I really enjoyed the conference. The balance between policy, academics and personal seeemed to work well, with each reinforcing the other. Workshops were given by Prof Robertson and by Janice Walshe of BCM Hanby Wallace.

You can download presentations here

I think it was a timely conference, given how much mental health has been in the media lately, and also given how much the recession must be impacting on people’s stress levels, both in work and outside work. If a company can recognise the value of supporting and valuing and minding its staff, it will see the positive impact of that. It is simple. If a company can value mental wellbeing and recognise their role in creating that, then they are more likely to understand and support staff going through any mental ill health, and their employees are less likely to experience it. Seems simple really.

Press coverage (including a small survey done at the same time): Irish Times, Irish Examiner, Herald

AHEAD’s mission is pretty clear. We would like to ensure that students with disabilities and specific learning disabilities get the information they need before going to college. When making a decision about college courses – undergraduate and postgraduate you may research information about supports in college.  Comprehensive information about support services for students with disabilities in higher education is on the QualifaX website – and we work with them to keep it up to date.

We are currently evaluating this page and would appreciate your thoughts. All those who send in responses to the below survey (also available in word format here) will be entered into a draw for a 4GB ipod shuffle (like this)

Ipod shuffle


One entry per person. Please send in your answers along with a name and postal address (in Ireland only) to getahead@ahead.ie, and marking your entry QUALIFAX. All responses must be in by the 26th January at 5pm.


QualifaX Survey

1. Are you familiar with the ‘disability resource’ page on QualifaX? (yes or no)

2. Have you used this facility? (yes or no)

3. If YES to question 2:

Did you find it easy to use? (yes or no)

Did you find it useful? (yes or no)

Did you get the information you needed? (yes or no)

4. If NO to question 2:

Were you aware of this page? (yes or no)

If you were aware of the page, but did not use it is there any particular reason you did not use it?

5. Have you any suggestions regarding this page?

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