Focus: Communications - Three minutes with... Parul Begum, The Children's Society

What is the DVD you have just launched?

I am London Disability Advocacy Project manager, and the DVD contains interviews with 10 disabled children in our care. It accompanies I Can Tell You What I Want, a report on our Disability Advocacy Project.

All the children who took part are severely disabled and give their views on what it's like to live away from home, what they think of the service and what would make their lives better. We commissioned a company to make the DVD because we wanted it to be independent.

What do the children say?

We used different methods to communicate with the children. In some cases we used pictures. In others, we used Makaton, which is a kind of sign language.

All the children were really excited because they had never been in a film before - they were pleased to have the opportunity to give their views. At the launch last month, one of the children talked about how he had been moved nine times in only five years - it was really moving.

The main thing to come out of the interviews was that the children wanted adults to talk to them before making decisions on their behalf, instead of just assuming things.

What do you hope the DVD will achieve?

We have been hoping to make a DVD like this for some time, but the funding was never available. We invited stakeholders and local authorities to the launch, where we wanted to get across the message that disabled children have a voice and that they should be listened to.

What feedback have you had?

All the comments we have had so far have been really positive, and local authorities have already taken steps to be more inclusive. We pride ourselves on inviting the children concerned to meetings and reviews, and we will continue to do so.

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