News

This page will provide you with all the latest information on everything that is happening at Accessible Wales. We will also keep you up-to-date on anything we think you should know regarding disability.


 

Accessible Wales, Learning Something New

Accessible Wales, Learning Something New

Accessible Wales, Learning Something New

Recently Principal Consultant Richard Jones met with Mark Thomas Campus Director/Director of Facility at the Aberdare Campus of Coleg y Cymoedd.  The meeting took place to discuss how Accessible Wales could help both the students and staff in the campus.

Richard was very impressed by the campus saying:

The building is a credit to Coleg y Cymoedd, Aberdare and Rhondda Cynon Taf.  It’s excellent to have such a facility for learners to benefit from.

Accessible Wales will be training Care learners from Coleg y Cymoedd offering them information on access and customer service issues.

Recently Principal Consultant Richard Jones with Mark Thomas Campus Director/Director of Facility at the Aberdare Campus of Coleg y Cymoedd
Recently Principal Consultant Richard Jones with Mark Thomas Campus Director/Director of Facility at the Aberdare Campus of Coleg y Cymoedd
Principal Consultant Richard Jones outside Aberdare Campus of Coleg y Cymoedd
Principal Consultant Richard Jones outside Aberdare Campus of Coleg y Cymoedd
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A Busy Few Weeks Ahead

A Busy Few Weeks Ahead

A Busy Few Weeks Ahead

It’s all go with us at Accessible Wales. The next few weeks are extremely busy, we’re not complaining though!

Museum of Modern Art in Maclyneth

Museum of Modern Art in Maclyneth

Next week we’re going to be carrying out an access audit of the museum of Modern Art in Machynlleth.  Our Access Consultancy service can be tailored to suit premises of any shape and size and can take the form of a Detailed Access Audit or an Informal Walkthrough Review.  When carrying out any form of access consultancy we consider all forms of access not just ramps and steps, only 8% of people with disabilities use wheelchairs!  Access improvements can be as simple as moving a chair from behind a door or changing the location of storage facilities.  For more information on the access related services visit our Access Consultancy page.

Percy Pickdon

Percy Pickdon

We are also excited to be working with Schools in Rhondda Cynon Taff carrying out our Anti Bullying and Respect training courses during Anti Bullying Week.  Our training is hosted by one of our newest team members Percy Pickdon.  If you would like to book our training for your school please get in touch with us, you can contact us via our Contact Page.

Monday 13th November – Friday 17th November is Anti Bullying week and we still have some spaces available, if you’d like to book a training course, or know more about the training we offer visit our Training Page.

Because of this we will be in and out of the office over the next few weeks, if you would like to get in touch with us, call 01685 810432 or email info@accessible.wales and we’ll get in touch as soon as possible.

20% off services until the end of October

20% off services until the end of October

As you know we’ve been open ten years and we’re offering 20% off all services booked by the end of October, get in touch now for more information.

If you’re trying to email us we’ve changed our address, instead of info@accessiblewales.co.uk it’s now simply info@accessible.wales

 

 

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Can you spot a person with a disability?

Can you spot a person with a disability?

Can you spot a person with a disability?

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It’s not as obvious as you think!

Today is world Mental Health Day, it is important to remember that not all disabilities and health conditions are obvious.

1 in 4 people in Wales suffer with a Mental Health condition at some point in their lives, but that doesn’t make them less of a person.

Mental health conditions, like any other conditions should not be seen negatively, today is a great opportunity to encourage people to talk about their mental health, this will help break down some of the misconceptions surrounding the subject.

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Our address has changed

Our address has changed

Our website address has changed

As one of the ways we’re marking our Tenth anniversary we’ve changed our website address – we’re putting the wales into Accessible Wales.

Our new website address is www.accessible.wales

It’s shorter and easier to remember, our email addresses will change too so if you are emailing info@accessiblewales.co.uk you will now need to email info@accessible.wales.

Don’t panic though, our old email addresses will still remain the same for the rest of the year so your mail wont get missed.

You can still find us on facebook and twitter and we’re also on instagram now too

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Are you Disability Aware?

Are you Disability Aware?

Accessible Wales will be holding a Disability Awareness Training course on Thursday 21st September at the Cynon Valley Museum.  The course costs £32.45 and will run from 10am – 1pm.

Delegates on the  November 2016 Training Course with Principal Consultant Richard Jones

Delegates on the November 2016 Training Course with Principal Consultant Richard Jones

Since opening in 2010 we have built up a successful training service with our Disability Awareness Training course being our flagship course.  You can find some of our testimonials by clicking here, we’ll be adding more soon.

Richard Jones, Principal Consultant

Richard Jones, Principal Consultant

The course is facilitated by company owner and Principal Consultant Richard Jones the courses are light hearted and informative.  Delegates will be pleased to know that the training they receive will be carried out in Richard’s informal, yet informative style aimed at helping them understand disability on a practical day-to-day basis.

Lynwen Francis, Practice Manager from St John’s Medical Practice says the following about the training her staff received:

“I write to thank you for the invaluable training you have provided to our staff both at the Aberdare and Cardiff sites.  Our staff thoroughly enjoyed the training sessions and found the interaction both educational and fun.  Many staff members are apprehensive around training as they worry they will made to feel or look foolish – this was definitely not the case with your training and everyone came back animated and enthusiastic about the subject.

I would happy to recommend your training to anyone and will be looking to do refresher courses next year.”

Even if you’ve attended similar courses before, this course is one that you should have under your belt to help you with your professional and personal development.  Whether you’re a taxi driver, a politician or professor this course will benefit you!

To book a place on this course visit here, alternatively you can email us for more information.  Block bookings can be catered for, we can also train your staff/volunteers/members at your venue.  Get in touch for more information.

Disability Awareness Training, Thursday 21st September

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Tried Contacting Us?

Tried Contacting Us?

Tried Contacting Us?

Telephone IconOur telephone and emailing system has been down since yesterday approximately 3pm yesterday.  We are pleased to announce that this problem has now been resolved, from 9am tomorrow morning everything will be fully working again.

@ Icon AWThank you for your patients, if you have unsuccessfully tried contacting we apologise for any inconvenience.  If you are not able to get in touch with us in the future please feel free to visit our Facebook and Twitter accounts as they are monitored regularly.

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Accessible Wales strengthens links with Cynon Valley Museum

Accessible Wales strengthens links with Cynon Valley Museum

Accessible Wales strengthens links with Cynon Valley Museum

The recently opened Cynon Valley Museum

The recently opened Cynon Valley Museum

Followers of our regular blog posts will know we have a strong history of working with the Cynon Valley Museum. That bond goes back ten years, as they were one of our first clients.

Principal Consultant Richard Jones with Cynon Valley Museum Development Manager Charlotte Morgan

Principal Consultant Richard Jones with Cynon Valley Museum Development Manager Charlotte Morgan

When Accessible Wales’ non-profit arm Accessible News opened in 2008, a disability support surgery called Empower was established in the museum.  This surgery has helped local people on issues ranging from housing to benefits and employment advice.

As part of our 10-year Anniversary,  Accessible Wales is looking at ways to help further local charities and voluntary organisations. The Cynon Valley Museum had recently reopened and is run by a charitable trust.

After meeting with then Chairperson Dinah Pye and Manager Charlotte Morgan, Accessible Wales offered to carry out a detailed access audit free of charge.  For more information on our Access Consultancy Service please click here.

Principal Consultant Richard Jones commented:

“I’m pleased to continue to work with the museum. Organisations like this are a big part of the fabric of an accessible Wales and we want to see the museum thrive by being there for the whole community.  We will help in any way we can to make that happen.”

Accessible Wales has now delivered the Access Review audit to the Museum management and Trustees, and are looking forward to working with staff and volunteers in the future.

Development Manager Charlotte Morgan receiving the Cynon Valley Museum Access Audit

Development Manager Charlotte Morgan receiving the Cynon Valley Museum Access Audit

Development Manager Charlotte Morgan said:

“As a new organisation taking over an existing facility, it has been invaluable to us to work with Accessible Wales, who have been able to help us identify improvements that we can make. We are grateful for their tireless work with us and look forward to doing more in the future to make sure the heritage of the Cynon Valley is accessible for everyone.”

If you run a charity or voluntary organisation and think we could be of help to you then please do not hesitate to get in touch by visiting our contact page.

For more information about the Cynon Valley Museum please visit their Facebook page here.

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Accessible Wales at the heart of the Cardiff Community

Accessible Wales at the heart of the Cardiff Community

Accessible Wales at the heart of the Cardiff Community

As former Chair of a Citizen’s Advice Bureau based in Rhondda Cynon Taff, Principal Consultant Richard Jones is a committed supporter of the organisation.  Accessible Wales are proud to confirm they are a supplier of training for the Barry branch of Cardiff and Vale Citizens Advice Bureau.

Principal Consultant Richard Jones with delegates from the morning course at Cardiff and Vale CAB

Principal Consultant Richard Jones with delegates from the morning course at Cardiff and Vale CAB

Accessible Wales recently carried out two successful half day courses during the same day.  Below are some of the positive comments we received during both courses:

“The trainers own experiences made situations and challenges easier to understand.”

“I think the delivery was extremely well balanced giving both sides as to what was realistically achievable i.e.  Changes are effected by budgets and what one person finds appropriate another may not.  The main point to remember is communication.”

“Excellent delivery on a subject that I now know much more about.”

“Superb.  Richard is a quality speaker with a great sense of humour.”

“I found the course very interesting and the trainer very informative.”

Accessible Wales provides clients with a flexible service, meeting their needs in terms of content and timing. Topics discussed are often perceived as difficult and thought provoking, and include addressing what is a disability and the etiquette used when interacting with people with disabilities. Practical demonstrations of access issues are always useful and welcomed by delegates.

Delegates from the afternoon course at Cardiff and Vale CAB joined by Principal Consultant Richard Jones

Delegates from the afternoon course at Cardiff and Vale CAB joined by Principal Consultant Richard Jones

Courses can be tailored to suit your needs, with the choice of either a full day (5 hours) or half day (3 hours) courses.  We schedule regular training courses at a central venue, or if you have more than five staff members we can come to you.

More information on our training service can be found on our Disability Awareness Training Page.

For more information or to be added to our mailing list, visit the contact page or (01685) 810432

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Another New Testimonial Added

Another New Testimonial Added

Another New Testimonial Added

Training with staff from St John’s Medical Practice

We have added a new testimonial to our Testimonials Page.  We have trained staff members in St John’s Medical Practice in Aberdare and Caerau Lane Surgery in Cardiff and have received a testimonial from Managing Partner Lynwen Francies.  To read it go to our Testimonials Page.

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Naidex 2017 – A Review

Naidex 2017 – A Review

On Wednesday 29th March I along with volunteers from Accessible News attended the Naidex Exhibition which took place in the NEC in Birmingham.  With over 150 seminars, 250 exhibitors and an abundance of live demos and interactive features it was a tremendous event.

I have attended this event a couple of times before, once when I was studying in college and later with my mother through the RCT Carers Support Project.

Accessible WC in the car park of the Birmingham NEC

Accessible WC in the car park of the Birmingham NEC

I was inspired with confidence when, after arriving at the venue and parking the car, I noticed an accessible toilet in the car park.  Now I know as an exhibition concentrated on all aspects of disability and impairments you’d expect accessibility, but how often are people with disabilities let down…. Not in this case!

Accessible WC door showing disability is not just about wheelchairs

Accessible WC door showing disability is not just about wheelchairs

The second thing, on a similar theme I noticed was the sign on the accessible WC door was the sign highlighting that not all people with disabilities use wheelchairs, something that is backed up by a recent campaign we ran on facebook.  With over 718 shares on our campaign and 1400 likes we were spurred on to change our logo to adopt the positive “thumbs up” as opposed to the traditional wheelchair.

The Magic Carpet Exhibit

The Magic Carpet Exhibit

The exhibitors that were on display were phenomenal, with stalls ranging from funky customised walking sticks and mobility aids to fluffy and cool wheelchairs for children.  The shift in stalls from the gadgets and gizmos last time I went up, to mobile phone based app products and sensory equipment (such as the exhibit above) was tremendous, it shows the way technology was advancing.

Made 2 Aid Electronic Neater Eater

Made 2 Aid Electronic Neater Eater

There were great devices such as this robotic arm that fed people who could not feed themselves.

Testing the magic knife

Testing the magic knife

As a keen foodie and founder of wheeliegoodmeals.co.uk I was interested to see the magic knife, it was a knife that needed very little pressure to cut through everything from bread, tomatoes and Swede.

Changing Places accessible changing room

Changing Places accessible changing room

I have read a lot in recent times about Changing Places the campaign for fully accessible toilets, and was impressed that there was a fully accessible changing facility in the exhibition hall.  This facility had a tracking hoist, bed and accessible WC, and enough room for easy manoeuvrability.

Sports area

Sports area

The exhibition also had a large sports arena allowing people to try wheelchair football and Goalball for people with visual impairments (amongst other activities)… I may have to have a go next time!

Wheelchair accessible motorhome from Coachbuild

Wheelchair accessible motorhome from Coachbuild

The last thing we looked at was a wheelchair accessible motorhome from Coachbuild, something that was inspirational.  With a wide range of features that could be interchanged to make it accessible to people with a range of disabilities it was a sight to behold.

I would recommend the exhibition to anyone, we’ve learned a lot through our visit.  While there is a huge amount of bespoke technology created to help people with disabilities, there are a vast amount of organisations customising everyday products to make them accessible.

To view our photo album click here.  Thanks for reading, come back soon to find out more about what we’re up to.

 

 

Richard Jones

Principal Consultant.

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