Contributed by Monica Alves, Communications & Event Planning Intern 

As we welcome the month of December, we turn our attention to promoting an understanding of disability issues, increasing awareness of the rights of persons with disabilities, and supporting their inclusion in every aspect of life. On Friday, December 1st, 2017, the annual celebration of the UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities returns to the Roundhouse Arts and Recreation Centre with PEBcelebrates!

Since its launch by the United Nations in 1992, this celebration continues to promote the positive impact that integrating people with disabilities has in all spheres of society –  including political, social, economic and cultural life. Anyone and everyone around the globe is welcome to join in! Let’s collectively show our appreciation of diversity, and strive for inclusion by breaking down barriers and opening doors for people of all abilities. Offering people with disabilities the tools and supports they need to achieve their full potential as human beings, is a goal posAbilities consistently pursues. We are teachers, supporters, and dedicated community builders, whose mission is to ensure that the persons we serve are able to participate in a community where they are welcomed and valued for who they are and the contributions they make.

The theme for 2017 International Day of Persons with Disabilities is Transformation towards sustainable and resilient society for all. The overarching principle of this theme is to ‘leave no one behind’ and empowers people with disabilities to be active contributors of society (as based on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development) This global framework aims to strengthen the resilience of people with disabilities by providing full access to justice, health care services, infrastructure and accessible communities. It is focused on inclusive education, lifelong learning, and sustainable economic growth through employment.

So, round up your friends and head on over to the Roundhouse Centre on Friday, December 1 for PEBcelebrates! It’s Vancouver’s free community inclusive celebration in honour of the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Join us for a day of family friendly, community engaged activities. Popular favourites include inspirational PEBtalks, an art show and sale featuring local artists and organizations, resource booths, live music, and interactive healthy living workshops. Come visit our booths – posAbilities and Alternative Creations Studio will be there! With something for EveryBODY, this is a celebration you cannot miss. This event is wheelchair accessible, and ASL interpreters will be available.

One of the many special guest speakers we’re excited to hear includes disabled Canadian Indigenous artist, John Sharkey.

“Born prematurely in 1954 with cerebral palsy, his parents were told to euthanize him. Instead, they institutionalized him at the Shriner’s Hospital for medical treatments and numerous surgeries which see him confined until he was 16. Sharkey tells his a vivid and emotionally-riveting autobiography of being a Canadian Indigenous artist with a disability who against all odds, reshapes his world.” – Leslie Roman

Learn more about John’s story in this inspiring video here.


What you Need to Know
Date: Friday, December 1, 2017
Time: 1:00pm – 6:00pm
Where: Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre – 181 Roundhouse Mews, Vancouver
Cost: FREE
Register today at

Wheelchair accessible venue with ASL interpreters.

PEBcelebrates Schedule

1:00pm – PEBcelebrates begins – Performance Centre
1:00pm – 2:00pm  – PEBtalks and opening remarks – Performance Centre
2:00pm – Art Show and Sale – Exhibition Hall

Visual Artists Include:                                                        

  • AJ Brown
  • Art Jonker
  • Artists Helping Artists
  • Cody Tresierra
  • Colleen McNeil
  • Jessica Bailuk
  • Alternative Creations Studio
  • Justin Albay
  • Morgan McConkey
  • Sandra Scow
  • Stages of Creativity
  • Roz Maclean

Musicians Include: 

  • 2:00pm – Simon Paradi
  • 2:45pm – Mark Ash and Michelle Alviar
  • 3:30pm – Manuel Hii
  • 4:15pm – Glen Loft Duo
  • 5:00pm – Digger Dan and Kristina Sheldon featuring Dave Simington and Graeme Wyman

2:15pm – Healthy Living demo – Making Soup and Smoothie Demo
3:00pm – Recreation demos – Sledge Hockey and Bocce – Room B


  • Bocce Ball (SportAbility) 
  • Sledge Hockey (SportAbility)
  • Floorball (BC Wheelchair Floorball Association)
  • More to come! 

6:00pm – PEBcelebrates concludes.

But wait! The celebration doesn’t end there.  Inclusion BC Foundation and BC Self-Advocacy Foundation have partnered with the National Film Board for the 3rd annual UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities Film Festival on Sunday, December 3 at 7:00 PM at the Anvil Centre, 777 Columbia St, New Westminster. Accessible venue, everyone is welcome.

The 2-hour program of Canadian short films and conversation explores representation of disability in film over the years. It also features the world premiere of our own film Disability Pride 2017.  Watch the trailer below and buy your ticket NOW.



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