Creating Inclusive Events NDIS Participation Strategies

December 7, 2023    |    By Madeeha Usman    |    10 min read
Creating Inclusive Events_ NDIS Participation Strategies

It's great to know that event planners are now conscious of the needs of people with disabilities. In today's events, being inclusive is as important as the event itself. It's more important than ever to ensure everyone can fully and comfortably join an event. You could plan a business meeting, a music festival, or a community event.  

In the past, it was a thing of concern when someone with a walking disability could not enter an event without being assisted. This has led to frustration, sadness, and the feeling of exclusion. This is one of the reasons NDIS creates inclusive events for more community participation. In this article, we discuss inclusive events NDIS needs to implement and how to achieve it in a community.  

What is an NDIS inclusive event?

NDIS events are public events that consider the needs of people with disabilities. Several kinds of public events are included in the term "community event." Everyone should be able to get into events in the same way. Also, everyone gains when events are open to everyone. Community events are mainly for the public. It might have National and local government consultation and engagement forums for cultural celebrations. Planning an accessible event improves the experience for everyone, including people who need it, their families, caregivers, older guests, parents with strollers, and the performers and organisers who may have to move equipment. 

One of the benefits of living in a supported independent living is the independence that comes with it. Actively taking part in your neighbourhood has many benefits. It makes you more independent, helps you be more social, and encourages you to speak up for yourself. It also makes you feel better about your emotional health, boosts your confidence, and opens your eyes to new ideas. By getting involved in their communities, people with disabilities can find many ways to learn, work, and have fun, making their lives more satisfying.

How NDIS facilitate community participation

When discussing community participation in NDIS, you might wonder what NDIS is? and how it facilitates involvement. The NDIS is an Australian program that gives disabled people what they need to be active members of their communities. This is achieved by giving them the help and services they require.  Individualised funding is one of the most essential parts of the NDIS. This feature lets users choose how their money is spent based on their needs and goals. 

People can pick the best supports and services that help them get involved in their community with this personalised method, giving them a sense of power and independence. The NDIS provides a variety of support services that are specially designed to meet the needs of each person. Some of these services are help with personal care, mobility aids, therapy, and getting into community activities. The NDIS ensures that people have the resources and accommodations they need to be involved members of their communities by supporting them in every way.

8 Ways to make an NDIS event inclusive for people with disabilities

Importantly, ensuring that events are diverse and welcoming doesn't just mean saying things against discrimination but also putting specific rules in place. Before planning an event, know you have yet to learn what type of people are coming. This makes it very important to always be inclusive in your planning. Here are strategies and things to implement for events with PWDS attendance.

1. Sign language interpretation and captioning  

Captions should be added to presentations, movies, and live streams at your event. This is to aid people with trouble hearing to still enjoy it. Consider offering sign language interpretation for crucial meetings. These changes ensure that people with trouble hearing can fully engage and join the event.

2. Consider cultural and dietary needs

It's essential to think about people's dietary and cultural needs when planning an event. This is to make sure that everyone who comes feels valued and accepted. It helps make everyone welcome to request different kinds of food, like vegan, gluten-free, halal, and kosher choices. Make sure there are lots of drinks that don't contain booze. People may feel more ready to participate in the event if there are prayer rooms or when they can fast.

3. Make time for networking  

Organise events that allow people to meet and talk with people from different backgrounds through networking. Hold events to meet new people or lead organised activities that help people make real connections. This allows people to meet new people, learn from different points of view, and feel like they are part of a group. Also, always remember your event starts a long time before it happens. You want to ensure that everyone who wants to join can do so from the moment they hear about it. Keep the following things in mind:

  • Your event website should ensure everyone can get information, even those who have trouble seeing or hearing. 
  • The process shouldn't have complicated papers and be easy to follow.
  • People who might have trouble with online forms should be able to use other methods, such as calling or emailing to sign up.

4. Choose speakers from a variety of backgrounds

To begin, make your speaker list more varied. Find speakers with a range of backgrounds, countries, genders, and points of view. Try to get various skills and experiences so your attendees can find something that fits their hobbies and needs. Having a lot of different ideas at an event makes it more exciting and open to everyone. 

5. Have events in multiple languages

Language hurdles make it hard to include everyone. For people who might not speak the primary language of the event, you can offer multilingual help, like simultaneous interpretation or translated materials. This means that people in different languages can fully connect with and participate in the event.

6. Code of Conduct

Giving event attendees a code of conduct is a simple way to ensure everyone knows what is expected of them and how the event should run. A code of conduct is another good way to let people know about how accessible the event is. Ensure all speakers, participants, and staff at the event follow this behaviour code to ensure everyone is safe and feels welcome. To do this, ask your attendees to:

  • Follow the event organiser's directions, such as how to stop discussions that aren't related to the event or are inappropriate.
  • Remember that everyone at the event has a name. If you're unsure how to say a name, a gender, or the right words, please ask nicely.
  • Follow the time limits for questions and discussions, share the space, and invite others to share their thoughts and experiences. 
  • Do not act in a degrading, argumentative, or hostile way.
  • Do not make assumptions or use stereotypes.
  • Know that yelling, screaming, harassing, threatening, or embarrassing people is not okay, and might be kicked out of the event.
  • Respect the different languages, cultures, points of view, and areas of knowledge.
  • People should know that they can leave the class at any time without giving a reason.

7. Transportation

Does the event centre have a safe place to drop people off? This is very important for people who take taxis, have support staff with them, are older, or have children. If possible, the drop-off point should have a curb ramp so that people who use mobility aids can safely cross from the road to the sidewalk. If there aren't any official parking spots, you could block off an area near the entrance for this reason. The city government can help with temporary parking restrictions depending on the event.

8. Neurodiversity 

Some disabilities aren't visible, and there are things you can do to make neurodiverse people feel more welcome and included at your event. Here are some of the most essential tips you can try out. 

  • A quiet area can benefit people who get too stressed out by noise or many people. 
  • Some people can't handle bright lights or loud noises. Ensure there are places where the sound and lights are quiet. Having a clear, foreseeable plan can help people with autism or other neurodiverse conditions get ready and feel at ease.

Conclusion 

NDIS-inclusive events are specific events that put the needs of people with disabilities in mind. Communities that hold inclusive events benefit from them. When planning, designing, and putting on neighbourhood events, we must remember that people have many different needs. Think about all the people who might want to use the space or participate in the event when you're planning it. This includes people with hearing, sight, mobility, cognitive, and psychosocial disabilities, caregivers, parents pushing strollers, and people for whom English is a second language. 

This is one of the core features of Care Assure, a registered NDIS provider in Australia. We ensure we plan events and activities that all our NDIS participants can enjoy without feeling excluded. If you need a provider that takes the needs of your loved ones seriously, Care Assure is the one.

Frequently asked questions

Why should NDIS participants attend events?

Inclusive events are critical to the health and happiness of NDIS participants. This is because they help them feel like they belong and are part of a community. These events allow people to meet new people, learn new skills, and feel more confident, improving general quality of life.

How may NDIS members be active in events and have their opinions heard?

To get people to participate in events, you need to make sure they feel safe and supported. Plan events with different points of view in mind, and use communication methods that include everyone. Participants' views are heard and considered in the decision-making process when they have places to say what they think and want.

How do you make people with disabilities enjoy an event?

Consider the following steps to make sure that events are accessible to people with disabilities:

  • Accessible restrooms, wheelchair ramps, and elevators should all be at your event spot.
  • Help people who can't see by putting up clear signs and directions.
  • You might want to give people with autism or other sensory issues a quiet place to stay.
  • Provide different versions of the materials, like audio descriptions or big print, to help people with trouble seeing.
  • Consider putting helpful listening devices in place for people who have trouble hearing.
  • You might want to provide sign language speakers or closed captioning for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

How to make an event comfortable for people with mobility disability?

To help people who have trouble moving around or being physically active, think about the following ideas:

  • Help people who are blind or have low vision by setting up clear signs and paths.
  • Make sure that paths and event areas are big enough for wheelchairs and other movement aids.
  • Consider offering wheelchair-accessible transport options for the members.
  • If someone asks for them, give them aids like wheelchairs or crutches.
  • Give people who have trouble moving around different ways to sit, such as raised platforms or chairs with arms.
  • Set up break-out rooms or refuge areas where people can rest or ask for help.

How do you ensure that people with learning disabilities can enjoy an event?

To make an event more welcoming for people with intellectual disabilities, think about the following ideas:

  • Help people with trouble thinking by giving them clear signs and written directions.
  • Use simple language to make event papers and information more accessible and easily understood.
  • Use pictures symbols or other visual tools to help people understand.
  • People should ask questions and get more information about the directions.
  • Give people a specific person to call for help or support.

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