Who are we really at the end of the day? I feel like its constantly evolving and changing. Yes, we’ve got our fundamental values and you try to search for things that align with you and what you can offer to the world, but that’s a challenge in many, many ways. I like to think that I’m a grass roots kind of person. I try to keep my feet on the ground, touch base with people and understand their realities.

Sadly, I’m coming to terms with the fact there is a very elitist attitude in our society. It’s still ‘that happens to people like them and not to people like us’. Even with all the awareness campaigns and all the talking that we do, we still don’t seem to get that it could be you or me one day. There are so many people who simply don’t know about societal issues. And I don’t mean at an intellectual level, I mean because it doesn’t impact their daily life, so they choose not to know. And that baffles me as a human being.

Not knowingly, and even as a little person, I always spoke up and often got in trouble for it. I’ve got one of those internal gauges where if I’m feeling uncomfortable about something, my body tells me and I have to speak up. In my early twenties I started joining boards, but we didn’t make a big fuss about it back then. People simply needed to come together and there I was. For 40 plus years I’ve had some connection to a group or multiple groups of people who have come together to work on behalf of access and inclusion issues. Being on a board is a huge responsibility and I take it very seriously. It’s also empowering in terms of being able to say that, collectively as a group, we can really do something. It’s also empowering on a personal level in terms of the learning and sharing that happens.

I always try to build bridges between people. There’s no point simply knowing people. If we don’t connect and identify where we can help one another, then what’s the point? I l say to people ‘I’m simply the bridge maker. Whether you cross that bridge is up to you.’ I can’t force people to come together, but I can establish that connection.

Freda Crucitti
Past Board Chair at Therapy Focus

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