Anoushka won an award for her work in founding Transport Sparks. Transport Sparks is a charitable community group that helps young people with special needs (many autistic) access, meet up, explore and share a love of all things transport.
From nothing, in a few short months, the group is now a few hundred strong and doing Sparky things all over the country.
This is the joyful side of social media and community.
The Spark community also now has a stronger voice when interacting with more typical institutions and companies who run events or transport. The Sparks use that voice to lend strength to voices that are often unheard. These give better ideas to typicals who often don’t fully comprehend the complexities of atypical or disability life.
The award was from a nomination, unknown to us, to National Rail. This led to the National Rail Ultimate Family award.
We sat on a table with a family where the father had an accident and he now only has a memory of the last 2 weeks and has no long term memory although is cognitively able. He can’t recall being married, having children or anything of his family life and relies on thousands of photos to be re-told the story of his life.
The family were cheerfully resilient about the upsides such as being able to see films over and over again, and not be bored.
Still. It has reminded me that the person with no bicycle feels sorry for themselves until they meet the person with no shoes, who feels sorry for themselves, until they meet someone with no legs.
But I like to think we shared (as much as we can) the same cheerful resilience in the face of life challenges.
If you’d like to know more about Transport Sparks you can contact us through this blog, or at Twitter or through our Facebook page.