We’d like you to meet our AccessAble champions who are helping to spread the word about AcccessAble and the vital work we do.
Each champion will share regular blogs and vlogs about using AccessAble to find accessible places to go, as well as attending our events and speaking to the media about AccessAble’s work in their region.
Their support will make a huge difference, so make sure you follow them on social media for more updates.
If you’re interested in becoming a champion, please contact us at [email protected], or call 01438 842710.
Lucy Wood – Midlands Champion
Lucy, who has Cerebral Palsy, started blogging when she realised that the public where obsessed with the fact that most disabled people are inspirational Paralympians. Lucy is neither of these things and started to share her life as an average disabled person. The Four Wheeled Wonder Woman debuted, with a dollop of sense of humour and buckets of honesty, readers seemed to really like it.
Earlier this year, using her Media degree and experience at the BBC as Production Staff, a Vlog was added to the mix, so people could not only read about her disability, but see it first hand, she’s working alongside AccessAble to help show people what it’s really like to be disabled in 2018.
Lucy says ‘One of the biggest problems to finding equality for disabled people is fear, I believe if disabled people are open and honest about our lives it breaks down barriers and suddenly strangers become friends, and society gets better. I’m thrilled to be helping AccessAble as regional champion, helping them make real, meaningful change for disabled people’.
Lucy lives in Staffordshire with her Family and loves live music. Pub quizzes, comedy, has a passion for cinema and spending time with her friends – in her spare time she is currently studying for her Level 1 in BSL.
Ed Rex – London Champion
Ed Rex is profoundly deaf in both ears, wearing a hearing aid in one ear and a cochlear implant in the other. Throughout his solo travels in the last seven years, he has noticed a keen interest from other travellers about his deafness throughout the world and in the UK and how his deafness influences his travelling experiences through different transport, activities and accommodation. From the bad to the good and to the downright hilarious, he often tells his story to many destroying stereotypes, discrimination and raising awareness to support deaf travellers.
Also, he has received many messages from deaf people across the globe asking for advice and inspiration about how they can travel solo without any stresses and worries about how deafness can affect them. This is the inspiration for Ed to launch ‘The Deaf Traveller’ in the hope to inspire, support and provide advice fellow deaf people to travel. Ed will also share with their readers on the Deaf Traveller their travel experiences about their deafness in differing degrees. Finally, ‘The Deaf Traveller’ raises deaf awareness within the travel community, travel brands, travel companies and even the transport networks to support deaf travellers around the world.
Emily Rose Yates – Scotland Champion
Emily is a 27 year old accessibility consultant, travel writer and presenter currently living in Glasgow after spending much of her time in Rio de Janeiro as the primary access and inclusion consultant for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Emily now runs her own accessible travel company and delivers talks and training on disability communication, accessible travel and the sexual rights and responsibilities of disabled people with the brilliant disability awareness charity, Enhance the UK. She also writes on these issues regularly for national publications and has presented documentaries and news pieces for BBC Three and BBC Click. She’s currently studying for a PhD in Women's Studies at the University of York.
Emily says ‘With accessibility and travel being very close to my heart, I can’t wait to get started with AccessAble!’
Kat Pemberton – Yorkshire Champion
Kat is a 21-year-old disability activist, model & vlogger from Yorkshire. She enjoys expressing her creativity through creating disability awareness, promoting equality and diversity online through expression and sharing of personal experiences, through a variety of social media platforms. As a disability activist, Kat enjoys educating young people across the country. She has always had an interest in modern media and has already developed an online presence through work experience within the media industry.
Kat says ‘As any young person, I live a very active lifestyle and enjoy experiencing everything that the world has to offer. I love to travel but unfortunately this can come with many obstacles when being a wheelchair user! I was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy type two after my first birthday and have been a wheelchair user since I was 9. I guess you could say I’ve had my fair share of trials and tribulations with difficulties in accessing popular public destinations and familiarising myself with new surroundings and the available access points. I’m very excited to be working with AccessAble as I am passionate about access for everyone!’
Conor O’Kane – Northern Ireland Champion
Conor is a 30 year old man living with a severe Neurological contrition, known as Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA). He tries not to let this stop him from living an active, healthy, and fun-filled life. Conor enjoys the same as most people in our society. Nights out, nice food, the cinema, sports and concerts. He plays Powerchair Football for Trailblazers PFC, who are based in Belfast. He’s currently playing at an International level and was awarded his first cap for playing for Northern Ireland this year. Conor is involved with a local charity known as the Mae Murray Foundation. As one of the board members he helps people of all ages and abilities to participate in various activities in an inclusive environment, like social nights out and weekends away.
Conor says ‘As I have gotten older I have found my love for traveling. My most recent adventures have included Las Vegas and Alicante. I have a passion and a drive to help others like myself, by helping spread awareness of the need for accessibility throughout Northern Ireland. I am looking forward to this new journey and expanding my life experiences, by teaming up with AccessAble.
We’ll be introducing more AccessAble Champions very soon – if you’re interested in getting involved, you can contact us by email at [email protected], or call 01438 842710.