At London 2012 Paralympics, Steven Hawking stated, “We are all different, there is no such thing as a standard or run-of-the-mill human being, but we all share the same human spirit”. What is important is that we all have the ability to create; to use this stage to show the world that regardless of difference, there is always something you can succeed at.
How is this relevant to Host City? I’m talking about the purple pound. This is the spend by disabled people and their families in the UK, which is a mind-blowing GBP 249 billion per year. To put this into perspective, the GDP of the entire New Zealand economy in 2017 was GBP 160 billion. The UK events sector is worth GBP 42.3 billion, so a failure to tap into this disability market is an opportunity missed.
Rick Hansen, a Canadian Paralympian said “my disability is that I cannot use my legs. My handicap is your negative perception of that disability, and thus of me”.
So, I’m here to change negative perceptions of me and my disability. My company helps your business tap into the purple pound by ensuring that you build environments in which people with different abilities can thrive, and by improving the appeal and accessibility of your products and services to customers with disabilities.
We advise how to make your events accessible; how to make your events appeal to the purple market; and finally, how to tap into the creativity of that group to help improve your events.
As a London 2012 Games Maker, I was part of the generation inspired. To paraphrase Stephen Hawking, I used my ability to create, to inspire difference. Let Enabling Abilities help inspire us purple people – and think how your business could expand if you tapped into this as yet untapped market.
This “lightning talk” was delivered at Host City 2018 in Glasgow in November 2018. Thomas Williams is speaking on the panel “Titanic Disasters and Herculean Feats” at Host City 2019 in Glasgow on 26-27 November