During UK Disability History Month, the Disability Action Alliance (DAA) Sports and physical activity project and English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) held the “Making Active Lives Possible” free conference on 24th November, in Central Hall, Westminister, London.
The event was a success with 70 organisations including Disabled People User Led Organisations, DAA members, EFDS Members and sports and leisure bodies having the opportunity to hear from speakers in Government, sport and disability rights.
Attendees heard from Justin Tomlinson MP (Minister for Disabled People), Liz Sayce (Chair of the DAA and CEO of Disability Rights UK) and Barry Horne (CEO of English Federation Disability Sports) on the importance of working together to tackle low disability participation in sport and physical activity.
There are over 11 million disabled people in the country and all should have the same opportunities to be active as non-disabled people. Being active can make a huge difference to disabled people’s quality of life. It has many benefits to our own lives and the community we live in, but disabled people are half as likely to be active as non-disabled people.
DAA member, the English Federation of Disability Sports (EFDS), did a great job organising the conference, during which they asked attendees to back their Charter for Change. The conference focused on one of the vital “asks” of the Charter, which says disabled people will have the same opportunity as non-disabled people to be active throughout their lives.
Attendees heard that disability networks can play a crucial role in supporting more disabled people to be active, and that getting more active can help with the management of long term health conditions and disabilities. It was also highlighted that activity helps tackle social isolation, increase general fitness levels and can create more inclusive communities.
During the second part of the event attendees were able to network and share their experiences. They heard about the latest research, and got advice on marketing and training within sport and physical activity.
There was lots of positive twitter activity going on throughout the event, and after some of which is shown throughout this article to help give a flavour of the day.
Thanks again to everyone who arranged and took part in this fantastic event.