WHO WE ARE
And how we got here
Rod Wills anchors our operation. Aside from being the client liaison for Able Comics, he also takes photographs and directs the messaging of your stories.
Rod has worked in the disability sector for 25 years and has held a range of formal and voluntary roles. Alongside his voluntary governance and leadership in sector organisations he has been a university researcher and academic in the field of Disability Studies. As the parent of a disabled woman Rod has a personal interest in understanding ableism and promoting changes to how people in our society respond to disability.
Hank Snell looks after the back end of ABLE COMICS, designing and editing the content, taking photographs and helping to write the stories.
Hank also works as a community filmmaker, (www.hank.nz) having collaborated with a wide variety of groups and organisations in Auckland. His previous roles included film editing, which had seen him working for a number of media organisations and broadcasters. Alongside this role, he works as an arts tutor and support worker in the disability sector. Hank has made more than one hundred community films with disabled people for two decades in New Zealand and the UK.
Working in disability and community arts Hank and Rod found they had a common understanding of the importance of the narratives of disabled people as a tool for change.
They worked in arts delivery and governance roles with the long established Interacting Disability Theatre Trust. Across a decade they worked toward similar goals and outcomes for community film and theatre participants.
Their collaboration and focus was the basis for a number of international conference papers and national presentations. Practitioners, researchers and students from overseas universities and community arts providers joined their ventures to further explore the power of community arts in developing the ‘voice’ of disabled participants.