This week, the birding community is celebrating Birdability Week 2021, the second annual event launched by Birdability, a nonprofit organization working to ensure the birding community and the outdoors are welcoming, inclusive, safe, and accessible for everybody through education, outreach, and advocacy. From October 18 to October 24, festivities include online workshops, panels, and interactive activities celebrating inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA).
“There are so many ways to enjoy birds and birding. Many of them could be accessible and inclusive for birders with disabilities and other health concerns, but we’ve got some work to do! Birdability Week is an opportunity to share resources and connect folks with access challenges and non-disabled birders who want to be more welcoming and inclusive,” said Freya McGregor, Birdability Coordinator and an occupational therapist. “We’re really looking forward to the panels, webinars, and workshops, which will help us all learn ways to do better, whether you are part of the birding community, organize bird outings, experience an access challenge or not, because birding is for everybody and every body!”
Birdability’s mission is to share the joys of birding with people who have disabilities and to ensure birding is accessible for everybody. The nonprofit focuses on people with mobility challenges, blindness or low vision, chronic illness, intellectual or developmental disabilities, mental illness, and those who are neurodivergent, deaf or hard of hearing, or have other health concerns. In addition to reaching current birders, the organization strives to introduce birding to people with disabilities and other health concerns who are not yet birders, so they too can experience the magical world of birds.
The weeklong event is supported by the National Audubon Society and was inspired by movements toward a more inclusive birding community, including #BlackBirdersWeek, Latino Conservation Week, and Let’s Go Birding Together.
Event schedule, information, and registration links found at birdability.org/birdability-week-2021.
Find free online resources at Birdability.org on leading an accessible bird outing, learning about inclusive language, and actions organizations can take to be more inclusive. This site also provides the Birdability Map, a crowd-sourced map of accessible birding locations, with details of each location’s accessibility features to help birders with disabilities find birding spots that accommodate their needs.
Thanks to the National Audubon Society for providing this news.