17 JUNE 2021

Legends of Disability: A board game with people with disabilities as role models

This innovative game aims to support skills-building for people with disabilities of all ages, by using as Role Models 100 people with disabilities who have made significant contributions to various fields of life, such as for example the sciences, arts, sport and business.

Learning by playing

“Play means joy,” says Asimina Brouzou, co-founder of the non-profit organisation “Challedu – inclusion | games | education”, which is also the game’s creator. “This was why we chose not to create a question or activity game, but instead to design an entertainment game, which people would want to play again and again. ‘Legends of Disability’ is not a game about testing the already existing knowledge of the players, who must show that they know the answers to its questions, but instead it offers them the opportunity to gradually familiarise themselves with the 100 Role Models, picking up on the meaning of the game as they go along.”

Yet this game, with its accessible versions for the people with intellectual disabilities or people who are blind and its accompanying educational guide, is just one of the actions of the project “Legends of Disability”, which also includes awareness-raising, educational, interventional and self-advocacy actions and is implemented in three Greek cities, engaging thousands of our fellow citizens with and without disabilities. The project is implemented in the framework of the Active citizens fund program, with Challedu as project promoter and the NGOs “Perpato” from Komotini, “Frontizo” from Patras and “Best Buddies” from Athens as project partners. The Active citizens fund programme for Greece is jointly managed by Bodossaki Foundation and SolidarityNow.

How is the game played?

The steps one has to follow in order to play the game are simple. Click the link https://challedu.com/legends-of-disabilities/ in the tools and actions area of the project, download from the link the materials of the game and print them. It’s time for the fun to begin!

For those who do not want to print things, there are links to the free online version of the board game on the special Tabletopia platform.

The game is based on cooperation. The players join forces to face the challenges that the game poses to them, using the “power” cards in combination with the “Role Model” cards with people with disabilities. The ultimate goal is for players to face collectively as many challenges as they can, achieving victory.

Of course, the people with disabilities serving as the game’s 100 Role Models were not picked buy chance – quite the opposite. The aim was to present people with disabilities both from Greece and abroad who have made significant contributions to various fields of life. It was also important to present people with different disabilities and impairments –mobility, intellectual, vision, hearing and others– so as not to exclude anyone. Moreover, the effort was made to include in the 100 Role Models not only men and women, but also people who had faced other kinds of social marginalisation because of their skin colour, sexual orientation, gender identity, culture, religion etc.

Co-creation festival for creating your own games

One of the most important actions of “Legends of Disability” is the three festivals of co-creation of games.

The first three-day Festival was held from 19 to 21 March by the NGO “Perpato” and exceeded all expectations, as more than 150 people took active part in it, while its live streaming online broadcast was attended by more than 5,000 people. Certainly, the most significant that this three-day festival he left behind were the 3 ideas for brand new games created by the participants.

Although the internet connection was not always good for everyone, for us it was a unique opportunity to bring together people from all over Greece and abroad (Cyprus, Ireland, etc.) to participate and offer innovative ideas for new games. Co-creating a game idea from the inputs contributed by dozens of people is certainly a unique experience. The ideas are born out of the needs and expectations of people with disabilities and of the professionals supporting them, about the tools they need in their daily lives and do not yet have at their disposal.

The 2nd “Legends of Disability” Online Games Co-Creation Festival will be held from 14 to 16 May in Patras, organised by the NGO “Frontizo”, under the auspices of the Western Greece & Southern Ionian Islands Regional Federation of People with Disabilities and supported by the Social Welfare Office of the University of Patras and the InterMediaKT non-profit civil law company. For details, see here: https://bit.ly/2PWiplk.

This will be followed by the festival in Athens, organised will be the followed by the NGO “Best Buddies Greece” from 4 to 6 June. Stay tuned!

What’s coming after the festivals?

The ideas from the festivals will not remain at an abstract level. The Challedu team will develop the most innovative among them and will transform them into full-scale games. Thus, they will be tested hands-on during the play-testing process, by those directly interested in them – the people with disabilities and the professionals or caregivers around them. Based on the corrections proposed by the target group itself, the games will be fine-tuned to maximise their impact.

To ensure the continuity and use of the project’s results, two guides will also be put together, describing the methodology of the project and the 4 final games: the first guide will be addressed to the professionals and caregivers in the field, and the second one to educators. Skills-building workshops will also be held in Komotini, Patras and Athens, to provide the project with as many “ambassadors” as possible.

Indeed, during 2022 “Legends of Disability” will return to Athens, Komotini and Patras, to present its results, organise advocacy actions based on them and, of course, to offer its participants the opportunity to play the 4 final games created by all those who took part in the previous events.

Are you ready to play?

The story “Legends of Disability: A board game with people with disabilities as role models” was published in pressproject.gr