Journey to a Life Without Limits: A Case Study on the Interplay of Disability, Social Network, and Civic Engagement of Selected Persons with Disabilities

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Abstract Our study examines the interplay of disability, social network, and civic engagement of selected highly engaged persons with disabilities (PWDs). Participants were chosen through purposive and snowball sampling. To dig into the details of civic engagement process, we used the case study approach and qualitative methods. Six days of observation for each participant with key informant interviews with their support system and people they have inspired was conducted. Given that the disabilities of the informants were acquired, results of the analysis uncover two phases in the civic engagement process through which the highly engaged PWDs go: (1) Acceptance Phase and (2) Civic Engagement Phase. In these two phases, there exists a bidirectional relationship among disability, social network, and civic engagement. In the first phase, disability and social network influence each other, which may eventually lead to acceptance. In the second phase, the acceptance obtained in the preceding phase is translated into civic actions. Civic engagement interacts with disability and social network as a result of the acceptance of disability. Analysis of the findings reveals that there are three significant roles that social network play in the civic engagement process of persons with disabilities: (1) support provider, (2) bridge for establishing relationships, and (3) modelling influences.

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Pangilinan, HG. & Reyes, MS. (2014). Journey to a Life Without Limits: A Case Study on the Interplay of Disability, Social Network, and Civic Engagement of Selected Persons with Disabilities, Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis, University of the Philippines, College of Mass Communication.