Most of us take our independence for granted. The freedom to choose how we live, what we learn, where we work. The choice to go out, have lunch with friends or just pop to the shops. But with 1 in 5 of us in the UK acquiring a disability at some point in our lives, suddenly, everything becomes more challenging. What does it take, as human beings, to have the patience and energy to push through the pain and frustration, to find the strength to thrive again?
‘Journey to Independence’, created by Don’t Panic and produced by Stink Films, launches Leonard Cheshire’s new nationwide campaign ‘Together, Unstoppable’. The 60’ film takes us through the journey of one man’s recovery from accident to job interview. Focusing on the different stages of rehabilitation, the film aims to convey how people can be supported in each sequence of this story; to live, learn and work, and the monumental impact that such an experience has on an individual.
“Eight in 10 people with a disability weren’t born with it and everyone will know someone, a friend or a family member, who has experienced this. It can happen to anyone and often is as a result of accidents, strokes, heart attacks or other health conditions” said Sonia Triki, Head of Individual Giving. “For many of us, it is the hardest thing we ever have to face. Sometimes people can feel isolated, and this is made worse by out of date attitudes. It’s vital people don’t feel alone and know that Leonard Cheshire is there to support them. We believe everyone, whatever their ability, should get the same opportunity to live the life they choose”
Leonard Cheshire’s new overarching strategy of ‘Supporting Journeys towards Independence’ details how they aim to support people living with disability; so they can live, learn and work independently. Whether people are born with or acquire a disability, everyone has the right to live as independently as they choose, regardless of circumstance. Having the right support and understanding can make all the difference through what is often a very isolating and difficult experience. Throughout the campaign, Leonard Cheshire will be asking the UK public to rally and support disabled people through this journey by adding their names here and sharing their own stories.
“For over 70 years Leonard Cheshire has worked tirelessly to improve the life choices of people with disability, since the day in 1948 when the founder brought a dying man into his own home to support him. The charity is growing to make a bigger difference in 2019 by rebranding and refreshing our five-year strategy. To better communicate our story we have hired the creative talent of Don't Panic. Their experience and their bold approach perfectly captures our renewed purpose and the essence of our new brand values positive, Proud and pioneering.” said Kate Burt, Leonard Cheshire’s Executive Director of Marketing and Fundraising.
George McCallum, Senior Creative, Don’t Panic said “If you want to know about work ethic, ask a disabled person. Leonard Cheshire see not only disability but ability. Offering much-needed support and understanding whoever you are, and whatever your journey to independence might look like. To shine a light on just one of these stories we posed a run-of-the-mill interview question; “What’s your work ethic like?” And answered it by showing the hard, painful, yet empowering story of one disabled man.”
For disabled people, the hard work never ends. It’s time society worked harder for them.