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16 April 2024

HSRC Connect Episode 4: Reclaiming invisible disabilities

Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)

The Reclaiming Invisible Impairments and Disabilities (REIID) project is still in its early stages at the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC), but one thing that is set in stone is that this project works to ask the difficult questions about things often unseen or ignored to get the answers needed for effective change in the disability sector. Focusing on disabilities and impairments that are not clearly visible to the human eye, REIID wants to explore the experiences people have of these impairments, hold open conversations and conduct research to find out how people with these disabilities can be supported to feel more seen, understood, and that they belong.

Beginning a project like this is difficult for multiple reasons. An important first question is how to approach such an important topic in a way that is comfortable for everybody involved. Why are we exploring this topic in the first place? What are the implications? How should it be done? What do we hope to achieve? This segment will work as the opening chapter and help guide the next steps for this project. An indication of its values and intentions.

This segment will focus on a conversation around what ‘classifies’ as being an invisible impairment/disability. We will discuss a few disabilities that are not obvious to the human eye and why this is the case. We explore the effects of having a disability/impairment that is not obvious to the human eye, and the lived experiences of them. This segment will unwrap why the team is centering this project around invisible impairments and disabilities instead of a focus on disabilities in general. We will discuss why awareness of invisible impairments and disabilities is important and what the effects of a lack of awareness have been. We will also discuss why we are doing this work and what our plans are to broaden this topic as a research project at the HSRC.

Watch Kirsten Dean in conversation with Nomkhosi Mbatha and Ncediwe Mdlulwa as they discuss why awareness of invisible disabilities and impairments is important and what the effects of a lack of awareness have been. 

Live on HSRC YouTube on 23 April 2024 at 10h00:

Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)

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