The world’s first podcast reflecting the personal lived experience of disability launched last week, in-line with the United Nations International Day of People With Disability (IDPWD). ‘The Invisible Podcast’ by Mable is unlike any other podcast, with each episode immersing the listener into a deep sensory experience of the unique circumstances of four Australian individuals living with disability, with a view to drive increased awareness and understanding.
Many of the 4.4million Australians with disability often have difficulty expressing how it feels, how it impacts them, and getting others to truly understand their life perspective. That’s why Mable collaborated with real people with disabilities to produce the four ‘The Invisible Podcast’ episodes true to their real-life experiences, each only 2-5 minutes in length.
· Episode 1: The Disarrangement – feat. Nina and her experience of Multiple Sclerosis
· Episode 2: The Disaffection – feat. Robert and his experience of Autism Spectrum Disorder
· Episode 3: The Disaccord – feat. Gabrielle and her experience of Psychosis
· Episode 4: The Disappearance – feat. Tina and her experience of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
The individuals described in detail the physical, mental and emotional effects of their disability, helping to construct the multi-sensory podcast scripts and direct soundscapes that reflect what they experience when living with their disability. For instance, in ‘The Invisible Podcast’ Episode 1: The Disarrangement, listeners will hear sounds that reflect fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and cognitive impairment in the workplace, reflective of Nina’s experience with Multiple Sclerosis.
Nina said her resulting episode was exactly what her disability was like: “This is so visceral and true to the experience of Multiple Sclerosis, that it was actually difficult for me to listen to. I actually hope it’s difficult for others to hear too, so they can start to understand the impact of invisible disabilities on those who live with them.”
For Robert, who has Autism Spectrum Disorder, the soundscapes really brought to life his own disability: “These podcasts will provide a further step towards bridging the gap and integrating the disabled into the mainstream community, as listeners are put into the proverbial shoes of those living with disabilities. They can close their eyes and imagine themselves in the difficult situations that are faced every day by those living with invisible conditions. With this, the experience will become visceral and internalised within the listener, and a passive form of empathy can be formed.
“It was my hope during the creation of these podcasts that a day will come where people’s understanding of Autism was not based on the stereotyped portrayals in mainstream media; but instead based on an innate understanding that has been developed through slow and gradual exposure to information such as these podcasts,” he continued.
According to the World Health Organisation, 15 per cent of the world’s population are living with disability. Nearly half of these, or about 450 million people, are living with a mental or neurological condition, which can often be invisible to others.
Mable Chief Operating Officer, Rachel Debeck, said the ‘The Invisible Podcast’ was created to build awareness of how some individuals experience their disabilities, especially invisible ones: “One-in-five Australians identify as having some form of disability. We often hear from our community that they feel it can be difficult for others to understand what the experience is like for them living with disability. By creating this podcast, we wanted to not only share what the lived experience of these people with disability was like, but we wanted others to take a moment to try and experience what it is like. Understanding a person’s experience of disability is the first step to better inclusion in the community.”
‘The Invisible Podcast’ is available for download on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Amazon Music.
For more information or to listen online, visit: https://open.spotify.com/show/5xCVZYPZ5Fuq4XMqRuqagc
For more information on the services offered by Mable visit www.mable.com.au