On the evening of April 27th, Kean University and ACI joined together to present a screening of Sins Invalid’s performance of Birthing, Dying, Becoming Crip Wisdom. The artistic performance included dance, spoken word, poetry, storytelling, and music. Each part of the performance touched on the stages of life of an individual with a disability from birth to death. It explored topics like body acceptance, sexuality, race, gender identity, ableism, discrimination, community activism, and peer support, among others. The audience consisted of both individuals with and without disabilities including many different demographics. After the screening, the audience had a spirited conversation about the topics of the film and how they had experienced or viewed them in their own lives. They also spoke about the importance of marginalized groups working together to create a unified community.
Thank you to St. Peter's University Hospital's Community Mobile Health Services for conducting auditory screenings at our office on April 25th. 15 people got their hearing checked by Betsy and Jenn, Community Mobile Health Services staff. We would also like to thank Terry Hurley of ClearCaptions for providing information on the company's caption display phones for people experiencing hearing loss.
On the evening of Friday, April 21st, Rutgers Master Gardeners Jerri Barclay and Anne Ryder presented a wonderful program about the health benefits of various vegetables, fruit, and herbs. They explained the benefits of each plant and answered questions about how to care for them. Anne and Jerrie gave tips about how to use parts of certain plants to continue to grow more! The session ended with a great hands-on activity of potting and decorating a lavender plant. Thank you Jerri and Anne for showing us how to be a bit healthier!
Recently, ACI hosted a workshop on the Holocaust & People with Disabilities. Guest speaker was Sol Spierer, a Holocaust survivor from Poland, who was imprisoned in a work camp in Siberia, USSR. His remarkable story of survival was inspiring. Moderating the workshop was Susan Rosenthal, a volunteer with the Holocaust Council/Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest NJ. Thank you both for the important and emotional presentation. The workshop was founded by a grant from the NJ Council for the Humanities.
ACI wishes to thank Dr. Ben Szirth and the Student Sight Savers program, which is made up of students at Rutgers University Medical School in Newark. The programcame to ACI and conducted vision screenings for over 20 participants on Thursday, April 13th.
ACI volunteers, members and staff celebrated National Public Health Week by making signs encouraging people to exercise and by walking (and rolling) up and down Amboy Ave in Edison/Fords. "This is a great way to enjoy the sunshine and meet our neighbors!" said Christina Barcalow, one of the participants.
On the evening of March 23rd, friends of ACI gathered at the Mountainside Public Library for a fun night of listening to music and flexing their mental muscles putting together puzzles. Conversation ranged from the best way to put a puzzle together, different things people like to do in their free time, and favorite music acts. Thank you to the staff of Mountainside Public Library for their hospitality.