In celebration of International Youth Day 2022 today, the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough, announced funding for projects led by youth to improve accessibility and disability inclusion, during a visit to the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health.
The BC Brain Wellness Program has received two grants through the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) Youth Innovation Component, which will enable the purchase of various communication tools and equipment. The purchase of new microphones, cameras, and a computer will help create a teaching kitchen that is more accessible for university staff, dieticians, cooks and medical students with disabilities. Additional technology such as new webcams and microphones for program instructors, as well as exercise and recreation equipment, will improve the accessibility and quality of virtual programming.
“We are grateful for this funding which will have a direct impact on improving the lives of people with disabilities and other neurological conditions,” says Dr. Silke Appel-Cresswell, neurologist and associate professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia, as well as co-founder of the BC Brain Wellness Program. “I am especially proud of our dedicated team who have worked tirelessly to help the program grow and continue virtually despite the ongoing pandemic.”
Established in 2019, the BC Brain Wellness Program is a unique and interactive program that promotes clinically relevant lifestyle approaches to complement medical treatment received in the clinics at the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health. By combining traditional clinical care with interventions that support healthier lifestyles, the program’s goal is to improve and sustain quality of life and function for its participants while pursuing research into lifestyle interventions for brain health.
“Working with the Brain Wellness Program has allowed me to bridge my interests in neuroscience and rehabilitation,” says Katy Chen, BC Brain Wellness Program’s Senior Program Assistant, who was integral in writing the grant along with Stephanie Quon, one of the program’s volunteers. “I look forward to continue finding new ways to improve and expand the various programs that we offer our participants.”
In partnership with 133 organizations across Canada, the EAF provides funding for projects that aim to create more opportunities for people with disabilities to take part in community activities, programs and services.
“Young people in Canada care very deeply about equality and inclusion. So when a young person wants to better their community and make it more disability inclusive, we’re going to help them do that. Thanks to 133 young leaders we are supporting today, persons with disabilities will be able to access more spaces, systems and services in their communities,” says Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough.