Disability Awareness Day
Sunday 14th July 2024
Hello and welcome to DAD 2023, I cant believe we are saying this, our 32nd annual event. Huge thanks to Expanse Learning Group and United Utilities, for their amazing support as our joint principal sponsors for this year’s event.
As we live in the shadows of the COVID pandemic and the current Cost of Living Crisis, we feel that the need for Disability Awareness Day and the week of complementary events is greater than ever before. It is a celebration of life, promoting independence through information, advice and guidance on mobility, wellbeing and independent living. Attracting exhibitors from statutory services, private businesses, voluntary and community sector. Sadly, the lingering effects of the pandemic are still with us, many well-known charities have been unable to regain their momentum, with many struggling to recruit volunteers. Many businesses are still battling with inconsistent availability of stock. This year’s big day comes at the end of a busy week with 8 fun-packed and informative events. None of which would have been possible without the support of our partners and our sponsors (See page 7 for full list). Not to mention the hard work contributed by our amazing WDP team, both on-site at Walton Hall and Gardens and back in the office at the Centre for Independent Living.
In addition to a vast array of exhibitors, visitors will have lots more to choose from including a sports zone packed with have-a-go events, a performing arts marquee hosting some of the UK’s top disabled artists, two arts and crafts marquees, a silent disco, a main arena and children’s entertainments. Since we launched our first event back in 1992, DAD continues to promote a 'can do' culture focussing on 'what disabled people can do', which helps to dispel the myths about what disabled people cannot do.
We would like to thank everyone who shares and supports the DAD dream, and special thanks to all of our sponsors and supporters, our volunteer stewards and helpers aptly named DAD’s Army, our exhibitors and of course you, our visitors. We hope you have an enjoyable, informative and inspiring day at DAD 2023. Finally, we hope you will agree, that during the past thirty years, we have created what has become, not only one of Warrington’s largest community events but the world’s largest voluntary-led, pan-disability event. Long may it continue... Thank you. Dave
Dave Thompson MBE DL MBA
Founder and Event Co-ordinator