CNMN > Projects > Stories of Care : Making Connections With and Between People with Severe Physical Disabilities

Louise Campbell

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  • Ouvert (définition : partitions pour une instrumentation non spécifiée)
  • Objets trouvés ou matériel artistique
  • Voix
  • Appareils numériques
  • Adultes
  • Ainés
  • Intergénérationnel

3 month residency

  • Éducation
  • Associations communautaires
  • Santé
  • Diversité
  • Famille
  • Limitations physiques (par ex. Paralysie cérébrale, Sclérose en plaques)
  • La santé mentale

Stories of Care : Making Connections With and Between People with Severe Physical Disabilities


The C.A.R.E. Centre, a recrea­tio­nal orga­ni­za­tion for adults living with severe phy­si­cal disa­bi­li­ties, reco­gnises the impor­tance of art and expres­sion for their clients, par­ti­cu­lar­ly for those clients who are non-ver­bal. In addi­tion to incor­po­ra­ting art-making into dai­ly pro­gram­ming, C.A.R.E. has hos­ted a num­ber of artist resi­den­cies with Tea­ching Artist Louise Camp­bell, who has faci­li­ta­ted pro­jects ran­ging in dura­tion from 4‑days to 6 months, giving Louise, the clients and the care­gi­vers an oppor­tu­ni­ty to get to know each other, and per­haps more impor­tant­ly for Louise as a guest artist to unders­tand the pro­gram and clients’ modes of communication.


The most ambi­tious of these pro­jects was also the most sur­pri­sing : the pod­cas­ting pro­ject Sto­ries of Care was sla­ted to begin in per­son at the C.A.R.E. Centre on March 23, 2020, ten days before the coro­na­vi­rus pan­de­mic was decla­red in Cana­da. Lucki­ly, pod­cas­ting is an ideal pro­ject to do at a dis­tance. In addi­tion, one of the most belo­ved pro­grams at C.A.R.E. is C.A.R.E. Radio, which conver­ted well to Zoom. Care­gi­ver Bru­no moved seam­less­ly into being a fabu­lous host, just as he is in per­son at C.A.R.E. The online video plat­form became the bridge to our clients and a way to move for­ward with the pod­cas­ting project. 


What real­ly made this pod­cast pro­ject fly was Exe­cu­tive Direc­tor Oli­via Quesnel’s ama­zing abi­li­ty to think crea­ti­ve­ly about how to connect with people. As a regu­lar part of her job, Oli­via culti­vates connec­tions and com­mu­ni­cates with C.A.R.E. clients using mul­tiple plat­forms, adap­ting to each client based on their abi­li­ties and home situa­tions. Just one example of Olivia’s crea­tive use of stan­dard tech­no­lo­gies is her phone conver­sa­tions with a client who is non-ver­bal. Oli­via set up a dai­ly phone call with during which she asked yes-no ques­tions, to which he respon­ded by pres­sing the touch­pad once for ‘no’ (beeeeep) and twice for ‘yes’ (beep-beeeeeep!!). 


Using the com­mu­ni­ca­tion plat­form that was most appro­priate for the client, a series of ques­tions was used to prompt clients to talk, remi­nisce and share sto­ries. One of these ques­tions was ‘what do you hear around you right now?’ Clients’ obser­va­tions were recor­ded and com­pi­led in Epi­sode 3 : Here and there. A com­bi­na­tion of archi­val recor­dings, short ins­truc­tio­nal videos of at-home recor­ding acti­vi­ties, and recor­ded phone and Zoom calls, and musi­cal gifts crea­ted by musi­cians Louise Camp­bell, Amy Hor­vey and Tim Bra­dy gave us what we nee­ded for a pod­cas­ting series : audio material !


Each of the pod­casts was made in col­la­bo­ra­tion with C.A.R.E. clients and staff, with epi­sodes being publi­shed and sha­red once final appro­val was given by Oli­via and/or the appro­priate client. Client invol­ve­ment inclu­ded recor­ding audio to very detai­led edi­ting and author­ship by C.A.R.E. Centre client Rachel and her care­gi­ver Mischa in Epi­sode 5 : Tobii Sto­ries, a Day in the Life of Rachel to an epi­sode craf­ted as a gift from the musi­cians and care­gi­vers to a client who was very iso­la­ted due to her living situa­tion in Epi­sode 6 : Bliss, Com­mu­ni­ca­tion and Giota’s Song

Of this pro­ject, Artist-in-resi­dence Louise Camp­bell says, “I will remem­ber and trea­sure this pro­ject for what I have lear­ned about the power of human connec­tion – that is, our abi­li­ty and drive to connect with the people we care about.” C.A.R.E. Centre Exe­cu­tive Direc­tor Oli­via Ques­nel says, “Indi­vi­duals with disa­bi­li­ties have so much to com­mu­ni­cate and are very moved by sounds and music. The oppor­tu­ni­ty for our non-ver­bal clients to work with artists and musi­cians to create pod­casts and to tell their sto­ries is exci­ting. This pro­ject enabled those who often are not heard to express their thoughts and share their experiences.” 

As Bru­no would say at the end of a C.A.R.E. Radio epi­sode : Stay tuned next time for more Sto­ries of Care. Peace !

And the chat­ter begins from the clients and fami­ly : That was so fun ! I loved your jokes ! Are you coming to the Zoom dance par­ty tomor­row ? Hey, can we do a Zoom call later ? Bye, eve­ry­bo­dy ! See you next time !

Lis­ten here to the pod­cast series : Sto­ries of Care

Sto­ries of Care is pro­du­ced by the C.A.R.E. Centre, Inno­va­tions en concert, Bra­dy­works, with fun­ding from Que­bec’s Schools Host and Artist of Culture in Schools.

Faci­li­ta­tion, concep­tion & mon­tage by Artist in Resi­dence Louise Camp­bell.

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