Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Passing it on

The following arrived in my inbox this morning, courtesy of an email list, mostly inactive, that I've been lurking around for years.

It reads to me like the author would like it passed on, and though I usually hit the delete button the moment I see the words 'send this request to ... people you know', this time I think I will post it here.


It's never just about Ability…?
A call for reflection - a few minutes at lunchtime 29 July 2010 –
Let’s make lunchtime today a time of inclusion, not exclusion. Let’s think about recognising and supporting all special needs people, regardless of their abilities or inabilities.

I believe that from birth to death everyone has the opportunity to experience the wonders of ability, as well as the frustrations of inability. We all experience the wondrous diversity of the human mind. For some, the extreme zones of ability and inability are infrequent or short visits. Others are trapped in, or find themselves leapfrogging between, the extremes.

People at either extreme of the ability / inability spectrum are generally recognized as having ‘special needs’. Most commonly, special needs people are associated with having visible disabilities. Yet, the majority of people who have abilities also have disabilities, often hidden from sight. All too often, we fail to see the weaknesses in those with abilities, just as we fail to recognize the strengths of those with inabilities. These difficulties are not always medical or biological. They can also be systemic, situational, sociological or political.

Each person is an individual, with a unique degree of ‘ability’ and ‘inability’. Stereotyping often restricts people to one end of the spectrum. Sadly, this denies recognition of their other abilities and or inabilities.

As a community, how we face these ‘special needs’ helps to shape our culture and attitudes to life long learning. As individuals with special needs, how we feel and how others treat us affects our character, general wellbeing, stress levels and how we cope with life.

On 29 July 2010, I am giving a talk at the 11th Asia Pacific Conference on Giftedness. My paper is about suggestions regarding school policy for special needs children, at either end of the ability spectrum. I decided that to coincide with this presentation, I would run a Call for Reflection campaign. I believe that there is not enough understanding of the difficulties of special needs people. I believe that there is too much stereotyping, and that this needs to be raised in the public eye.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. If you are either in this position, or know of a friend, relative, partner, work colleague, and you would like to take some action on their behalf, then please:

1.     Reflect on these problems and solutions at lunchtime on 29 July 2010. 
2.     Send this request to as many people as you know. 
3.     Send a message of hope to these people, so they know they are not alone.  
4.      Visit our website www.g3n1u5.com for more details.
5       Facebook Event. http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=109599895757172
6.      Facebook Cause  http://www.causes.com/causes/506402/members 
7.      Email Tony  tony@g3n1u5.com 

About the Author

Anthony Nolan, OAM, JP, who scored a perfect score in an IQ test at 99.9 percentile, is the current treasurer of the NSW Association for Gifted & Talented Children, and the gifted children's coordinator for MENSA Australia, the high IQ society. He runs online support groups for gifted adults and visual spatial thinkers, mentors children, contributes to gifted publications, and has advised members of parliament. Tony has Aspersers, Dyslexia, and ADHD difficulties. Tony received recognition from Rotary, NSW Parliament (Lower House), a Local Hero Award (Lane Cove), and received an OAM in 2001, for his contributions to community. 


  1. Hi Lisa - do you mind if I share your blog as a link to this article on my blog?


  2. Sure. However, whatever, spread the word.