Back in August we had the opportunity to attend the Abilities Expo in Houston and are pleased to know the city has set aside October as Disability Awareness Month. Houston Mayor Annise Parker kicked off the event at the Metropolitan Multi-Service Center on October 5th. The mission of the month long celebration is to raise public awareness of the positive contributions of Americans with disabilities and the theme for the 4th annual program is “Inclusion treasures diversity and builds community”.
According to the 2010 census, Houston has an estimated 600,000 residents with some level of disability and one of them happens to be Tina Williams, the 2012 Ms. Texas Wheelchair. When we were at the Expo we had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Williams in person and found her upbeat personality to be contagious and her determination inspiring. Tina stopped by our booth every day to admire our wheelchair bags, to enter our drawing for a bag, to chat and to show us her face painting. We looked forward to her visits.
At the Disability Awareness Month kick-off Tina was honored with a True Blue Award that recognizes outstanding citizens who have played a significant role in addressing and removing barriers for people with disabilities. She is also a member of the Houston Commission on Disabilities and frequently supports activities hosted by the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities.
Another event that marked the inclusion theme of this year’s awareness month was the unveiling of a mural called “Out of the Shades” by artist Doyle Burley at the City Hall Annex on October 9th. The mural features the many faces of people with disabilities and includes an image of Williams with her Ms. Wheelchair Texas sash. The mural will be displayed at various events throughout the city during the month.
We’re proud to know Tina Williams.