Brit Writers' Award for Outstanding Achievement for Adam Bojelian

Brit Writers Award for  Adam Bojelian Adam Bojelian, who is part of the community of Unitarians in Edinburgh, was presented with a special award for Outstanding Achievement at the Brit Writers' Awards at The 02 in London on Thursday 15 July 2010. Adam has severe cerebral palsy as well as a seizure disorder, uses a wheelchair and has extremely limited use of his hands. He has a tracheotomy and is oxygen-dependent Adam's only means of communication is by blinking, so it is a laborious process for him to write his poems by choosing words and syllables from lists. Adam reached the semi-finals without the competition judges being aware of his difficulties. Adam explained using a computerised voice to the audience at the awards ceremony how he writes his poems and recited one of them:

A Silly Poem
At my school the green fish digs a hole and chases the dog down the road.
In the yard the big dinosaur laughs out loud and tells me a joke.
I laugh.
Later that day I saw a bug eat my teacher for lunch.
The lion reads a book in a tree and then,
a scientist with a monkey drives a car too fast through the air.
In my dream, I catch a spaceship to the moon.
I go off looking for hot dogs.

From when Adam was about ten months old he seemed to be using blinking to communicate. As he grew up his communication by blinking became very clear. Adam has always enjoyed songs, stories and poems. He has particularly liked nonsense poets like Edward Lear, Dr Seuss or Spike Milligan. It was the St Marks poetry group which first got him into writing poems. He also wrote a poem about his dog Charlie for the Animal Service at St Marks.

Brit Writers Award for  Adam Bojelian Charlie
My name is Adam and I am nine
And I own the smartest funniest dog in town,
His name is Charlie & he is a clown.
He is small and white with a waggy tail
Two sticky up ears and an eye patch of brown.

Round and round my room he'll race
Wagging his tail and licking my face,
Shaking wet fur all over the place.
"Oh Charlie" mum cries,
"Your muddy paws all over the floor"
And Charlie darts straight out of the door,
Only to return when the coast is clear.

Beside me he lies, whether I'm poorly or well,
He is wise as can be and I'm sure he can tell,
Nudging and pawing to snuggle away,
Close up beside me, he'll stay there all day.

His nurse who is with him during school hours helped him to write this poem by asking him lots and lots of questions; it took them about three weeks to complete it, as it was a slow process of giving lots of choices and Adam blinking to indicate his choices and then blinking to indicate the order of the words.

Scottish Faith Communities Join Together for Gay Pride

Gay Pride 2010 Scottish Faith Communities joined together on Saturday 26th June to march through Edinburgh in Pride Scotia 2010. Their aim was stand up and be counted against the growing wave of religious extremism which, all too often, preaches a message of intolerance and exclusion.

Members of Quakers in Scotland, the Scottish Unitarian Association, the Edinburgh Liberal Jewish Community, the Interbeing Buddhist Community and the Metropolitan Community Church showed their support for the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community of Scotland, and called for equality in Scottish law.

Liberal faith communities call especially, at this time, for equality for same-sex couples, allowing them to be legally married in places of worship. Faith communities want the Scottish government to listen to their voices, and provide equality for same-sex couples. They call for religious freedom for those faith communities, who wish to do so, to perform civil partnership ceremonies on their own premises, using the religious language of their faith traditions.

Gay Pride 2010 Earlier this year the Equality Act became law, enabling religious organisations in England and Wales, who wish to perform civil partnerships, to do so. In Scotland the law on civil partnerships remains unchanged; Scottish law bans civil partnership ceremonies from taking place on religious premises or from using religious language.

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