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Embracing Diversity: International Day of Persons with Disabilities

At Speakers Collective, we unite with a shared commitment to challenge stigmas, foster vital conversations, and champion learning across diverse societal issues. As we observe the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, it’s an opportunity to spotlight some of our amazing members and bring attention to the inequalities that still exist globally.

Description: members from the Speakers Collective featured include;

  • Jack Ellis, founder of NeuroCandy, passionately advocates for neurodiversity, particularly ADHD.

  • Nicky Marshall, an international bestselling author and speaker, brings inspiration to her audiences.

  • Andy Bishop, founder of Man Gang, combines expertise in Health & Safety with a mission to destigmatize mental health issues.

  • Sarah Petherbridge, a disability awareness trainer and public speaker on disability and inclusion.

  • James Ball, a veteran of the UK Fire & Rescue Service, bravely shares his battles with mental health.

  • Jude Price, a Mental Health First Aid trainer, spearheads the Walk N Talk 4 Mental Health campaign.

  • Harry Mansfield, a suicide prevention trainer, best-selling author, and Mental Strength Consultant.

  • Matthew Royce, Customer Development Manager at Sign Solutions, offering crucial services for the Deaf community.

Why do we need an International Day of Persons with Disabilities?

The statistics are stark: among our world’s 8 billion people, over 1 billion individuals have some form of disability, equating to approximately 15% of the global populace. Shockingly, more than 100 million are children, facing challenges that extend beyond the typical struggles of childhood.


One alarming reality is that children with disabilities are nearly four times more likely to experience violence compared to their non-disabled peers. Moreover, around 50% of disabled persons are unable to afford essential healthcare, compounding their difficulties.


These statistics are not just numbers—they represent lives, stories, and battles that deserve recognition and support.


Jo Emmerson and Jon Salmon, Co-CEOs of Speakers Collective, feel it is incredibly important to support International Day of Persons with Disabilities;

"Our collective strength lies in embracing diversity, championing inclusivity, and amplifying the voices of those navigating life with disabilities. Together, let's continue fostering an environment where every individual, regardless of ability, feels empowered and valued in our shared journey towards a more inclusive society."

We would also like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to Sign Solutions, who have provided British Sign Language interpretation for Speakers Collective. Launched as the first independent British Sign Language (BSL) Interpreting agency in 1998, Sign Solutions is now a nationwide specialist organisation which provides interpreters, training and other language services.


Sophie Kang, Sales and Marketing Manager at Sign Solutions, encapsulates the significance of International Day of Persons with Disabilities;

"IDPWD is important to Sign Solutions as our mission is to create a society where no person should experience barriers in communication in their everyday lives. We strive to achieve inclusion and work to create positive change within the d/Deaf community."

So as we all acknowledge this day, let’s reaffirm our commitment to creating a world where every individual, irrespective of ability, can thrive and contribute without barriers.


Together, let's champion diversity, embrace inclusivity, and foster a society where every voice is heard and valued.

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About Speakers Collective

The Speakers Collective is a Social Enterprise. We work together with a shared commitment to challenge stigma, facilitate important conversations and promote learning on a variety of social issues. Please do contact us via info@speakerscollective.org or call 020 8123 8250 with any enquiries.

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