By Catherine Carlton (@ckecarlton), volunteer contributor, American Red Cross
Two of my dear friends introduced me to the 3E Love symbol soon after my son was diagnosed with a brain malformation. The symbol of the wheelchair heart makes me smile every time I see it. I have it on my car, I have it on shirts, I have a necklace, we’ve given them as Christmas presents to the whole family, and my husband had had custom shirts made for my son’s birthday party.
I love spreading the symbol and the message of the 3 Es: empower, embrace and education.
That’s why International Day of Acceptance is an important day to proactive share the importance of social acceptance, inclusion and awareness. International Day of Acceptance is a in honor of the late Annie Hopkins, founder of 3E Love and creator of the International Symbol of Acceptance. (http://threeellc.com/idoa/)
The Red Cross embraces these same 3Es in its work in communities and has an office of disability integration to make sure that all shelters and services accommodate everyone, especially those with functional needs. Recently the Fort Worth Disaster Action team did an amazing job responding to a day-time apartment fire, at which 90 percent of the residents were adults with intellectual disabilities.
The Red Cross regularly does drills to work with all populations in the community.If you have any questions, needs or feedback, let us know.
In the meantime, spread the word of acceptance.