A Better World for All: a poem by Stevie Wills

Stories | January 24, 2023 | Author: Stevie Wills, Community Education Officer, CBM Australia

Creating a #BetterWorldForAll starts with all of us

I’m excited to introduce to you my poem, A Better World for All.

It is a poem that reiterates CBM Australia’s vision for an inclusive world for all people with disabilities. When people with disabilities are fully included and able to fulfil their potential, everyone benefits. Ensuring inclusion requires the identification and removal of barriers to people with disabilities fully participating in their communities. People with disabilities living in poverty face immense barriers to inclusion. Twenty per cent of the world’s poorest people have some kind of disability. In developing countries, one in three children with disabilities do not attend school.

I am a performance poet. I have been writing for years. I’m aware that countless people have been moved by my writing and performing.

This poem emerged from an online course on writing and performing poetry that I took in 2021. Though I’m an established writer and performer, I knew I had more to learn. I needed to learn from successful artists. I wanted to grow in my craft. I have learnt an enormous amount and developed as an artist through online courses.

Building a better world for all, in which people with disabilities can fully participate, is a life-long mandate. If you have been investing in building inclusion into a community you will appreciate that it is a journey of continual learning.

The poetry course I forementioned entailed seven lessons. This poem emerged from the lesson about rhyming and writing a rap. This was not my forte! Not my style! And the videographic examples I found were not within my physical capabilities.

But I gave it a go. I followed the lesson and played around with it. I ended up with something I found worth working through to completion.

If you feel similarly unequipped and inexperienced regarding disability inclusion, then great! You can start from where you are. Start by learning about our work. Or dig into our Luke14 resources.

Wherever you feel you are on the path of building a better world for all, there’s a step, (or several different steps) ahead of you to take. It is a call worth participating in, because it’s one that benefits all.

A Better World for All

A better world for all.

A world where all

is accessible

For all, people.

What may be called

a tall call

would benefit all.

A world where

people with disabilities

have opportunities

to fully participate in their communities.

Enabling all to make contribution

benefits all.

This is a better world for all.

A world where

people dwell in equity

perceived with dignity

a gulf from reality

the reality I

bring to light

a spotlight

on the plight

of people with a disability

living in poverty

facing barriers to equity

within their community

to full participation

education

occupation

medical intervention

vaccination

sanitation.

Thus, the situation

People with a disability

more likely

to live in poverty

and people living in poverty

have less

access

to medical intervention

vaccination

vital public information

nutrition

sanitation

and this

increases the risk

of illness, infection

the acquisition

of disability.

 

Thus people in poverty

more likely

to live with disability

and people with a disability

more likely

to live in poverty.

This, the situation.

A persistent, unfair cycle

of poverty

and disability.

 

A better world for all

let us build

reducing barriers

removing barriers

build the inaccessible

physical

into the accessible

physical.

Remove each barrier

to wheelchair

access.

Provision

of variations

in forms of communication

 

But more insurmountable than stairs

are prejudice stares.

 

Rearrange the interior.

The densest of barriers

Attitude.

what we conclude

about disability

will eventuate

in how we relate

to people with disabilities

and their families.

 

It’s time for an interlude.

Check attitude

slide under microscope

to be reviewed.

For attitudes prelude

what it means to include

or exclude

 

A better world for all

let us build.

For this is the call.

Benefits all.

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