Hygge and happiness – choosing friendship this new year

Sharing, being kind, relaxing with friends – Gay Search discovers how to hygge for the new year. The latest export from Scandinavia to arrive on our shores along with snowflake sweaters, Scandi-noir thrillers and blonde wood IKEA furniture is the Danish concept of hygge. There is no direct translation in English of the word (pronounced ‘heurgha’) although some people say …

An Engaged Community In the Midst of Global Change

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” – Mister Rogers I chanced upon Fred Rogers when I spent the summer of my 21st year running a summer programme in inner-city Philadelphia. Mister Rogers’ television programme …

Church can be a place to welcome people living with dementia

We all need to find ways of creating more inclusive communities for those living with dementia. Churches are ideally placed to make an important response, says Livability’s Associate on Dementia, Charlotte Overton-Hart. Churches can offer a place of welcome and support Churches – and other local partners – are right at the heart of their communities and have a great …

Are our communities a place of belonging for all? Working for partnership and inclusion

When asked to imagine a community, we would probably describe a group or groups of people brought together by interests, shared space, beliefs or experience. Not that this suggests that conformity is necessary to the cohesion of any given community. Communities are, in fact, enormously enriched by the diversity, uniqueness, experience and expression of every individual member, no matter their …

The biggest challenge to creating an inclusive society is human nature

Andrew Douglass is the Chief Executive of the events company “Innovision” and Founder of Parallel London. His team deliver pioneering and creative events for major brands including the BBC, Redbull, the Olympics, Pirelli and Aston Martin. He spoke to Livability about his reflections on inclusion-focused “Parallel London” and the value of events in creating social change. I have spent most …

Growing thriving communities from the soil up

Gay Search takes a look at how community gardens nourish neighbourhoods and help wellbeing to flourish. Over the last thirty years or so, the steady rise of community gardens have done wonders to green up our towns and cities and have often brought beauty and nature to what had been areas of dereliction and urban decay. Although it’s hard to …

Running towards more inclusion and everyone taking part

Football fan Ben is a keen runner and enjoys being active. Ben shares why he’s taking part in the 10km Parallel London race on 4th September – one of the challenges at the first ever mass participation fun push/run. “My dad Paul, my brothers Dominic and Peter and my sister Frances all run for fun,” says Ben. “I enjoy running …

Using music to overcome personal challenges and promote inclusion

Lauren Taylor from Bournemouth is taking part in Parallel London this September – the first ever fully inclusive fun push/run. She shares her motivations for getting involved in her very first challenge event. Lauren is 21 and lives at Talbot Manor – a residential home for young disabled people in Bournemouth, run by Livability. “It’s really good because we’re like …

“Parallel London’s Super Sensory 1k will be different for every athlete. It’s going to be extraordinary”

Jo Grace is an inclusion and sensory engagement consultant and founder of The Sensory Projects. She is one of the ambassadors of Parallel London, the UK’s largest disability-led challenge event which will take place on 4 September. Jo, who has a diagnosis of autism, aims to contribute to a future where people are understood in spite of their differences. What …