Martyn Sibley is creating Social change
4

patrons

$28
per month
I for Inclusion has one clear aim - to make sure our society is fully inclusive of all disabled people, no matter who they are, where they're from or what their circumstances are.

Do you remember being a teenager? It's hard to forget those days right? Or maybe you just blocked it all out? The low self esteem. The peer pressure. The trying to fit in.

We all craved acceptance and inclusion...

My teenage years

When I was growing up, I had the additional factor of being disabled to deal with. Don't worry, I don't do sob stories! Unfortunately though, when I was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy at 18 months, the medical profession did. My parents were told bleak things.

As I grew older, medical treatments did improve. With antibiotics, cough machines, spinal fusion surgery and so forth (I didn’t say they were pleasant!) us SMA-ers did far better health wise.

I went on to mainstream school. Though the local secondary school wasn't accessible, so I had to travel further away each day. My family and friends were very supportive. I had great health, education, and social care professionals around me. I used lots of assistive technology (my electric wheelchair is still my everything).

My parents did all the fighting for this. I had to learn that skill later on in life. Still, I remember the teenage angst alongside needing so much personal care support (not easy for mum and dad either I imagine).

It was hard not always being able to conform to the peer pressure. I remember one time slamming shut my bedroom door, to have to then call out for help to open it again (kinda funny). When out socialising it took a lot of transport planning, and a reliance on someone to help me wee.

There was was definitely a feeling of not fitting in.

The Bigger and Ongoing Issues

Onwards to this day. It is said 13 million people have a disability or long term health condition in the UK alone. The advances in medical treatments are giving people longer and better lives. They are not eradicating disability.

Whilst this is great news, there's still a few problems to overcome! For example:

- Disabled people (and indeed many other marginalised groups) are currently facing huge government cuts, a declining quality in vital public services, and a general feeling from the media that we're a burden.

- Despite the accessibility improvements over recent decades to housing, transport, education, employment (leading to financial independence), leisure pursuits, and social inclusion - statistics still show how far behind disabled people are when compared to their non disabled peers.

Our Solution

'I for Inclusion' believes in one simple premise. Every person has a passion and purpose in life. It is the responsibility of a modern society to include everybody. We should all participate and contribute in our communities. With no exceptions.

For businesses the widely known concept of the 'purple pound' has helped promote this solution. Apparently the spending power of disabled households is £249bn! Therefore accessible products and services, coupled with disabled employees, is very attractive for corporations to benefit from.

Not to ignore the political power of 13m disabled voters. Giving strong economic and political reasons for inclusion.

Lets not forget either how disability could touch anyone at any time. So it makes sense to back inclusion, if only for selfish reasons.

Our Progress

When I was that scared teenager, I wished for positive role models. To have seen someone like me, older and achieving, would have helped so much. To learn about accessing government funding, managing carers, using assistive technology, researching accessible places, and other relevant knowledge...

It would have meant the world!

My Blog

So in 2009 I started my blog, www.martynsibley.com, and social media outreach. Using words, pictures and videos; I told my personal story. The stories of going to university, living in London, travelling the world, running my own business, learning to drive, managing carers, and generally staying healthy. Also the stories of ill health, independent living stresses, career hurdles, inaccessible holidays, and all of the other low moments.

As a result I've had 100,000 web visitors, attracted thousands of social media followers, daily engagement on email, and lots of great fun. I've been invited on BBC breakfast, written for national newspapers (regularly contributing to the Huffington Post), and presented tv shows. I'm now a published author with my travel memoir 'Everything is Possible'. Plus I'm podcasting with interviews of awesome influential disabled people.

Governments, businesses and charities have asked me for inclusion advice. I'm an associate of Open Inclusion and We Are Purple (who work with big brands). I sit on steering groups for health, housing, transport, tourism and beyond.

As a result I was voted Britains third most influential disabled person in the 'disability Power 100' list.

Disability Horizons

On a holiday from my London day job (pre self-employment), my SMA buddy Srin and I roadtripped around California and Las Vegas. During that fateful trip we sat on the beach in Los Angeles and dreamt up a disability lifestyle magazine. It'd be like my blog, but from other disabled people, with different impairments, and different experiences.

In April 2011 we launched Disability Horizons. We wrote some articles in the beginning. We begged friends to write. We begged people to read it. We begged and we borrowed and we blagged.

Disability Horizons has had over 500,000 web visitors worldwide. We have 20,000 followers on twitter alone. The magazine shares positive stories. Showcasing how life looks when independence and inclusion are in place.

We've been featured in the Guardian and on the BBC. Through our specialism of independence and inclusion, we've connected our community with governments, businesses, and charities.

We're also supporting other disabled people to run Disability Horizons in other languages and countries. It's currently in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Arabic. Raya, editor of http://disabilityhorizons.ae, is seeing amazing growth and media attention.

At present I'm the CEO of Disability Horizons. Srin is the CEO of another project we Co Founded together called Accomable. It's been a great journey!

Disability United

Since launching Disability Horizons, the world hasn't been quite so rosy for disabled people. The United Nations are investigating the UK government for breaching the 'UN convention for the rights of people with disabilities'.

In June 2016 I decided we had to act. So we launched a campaigning website called Disability United. Our articles and social media presence raise awareness of injustice and promote fairness.

Our first research project uncovered that many CCG's (Clinical Commissioning Groups) would consider putting disabled people into care homes. Talk about going back 60 years. Our article hit the national media and was referenced in the shadow report to the UN. A few CCGs have subsequently changed their policies already :-)

Our editor is now on the Independent Living Strategy Group, chaired by Baroness Jane Campbell. So we're right in the thick of the political battle. Plus we collaborate heavily with our fellow disability organisations.

Synergy trumps rivalry, every time.

Why We Need Your Support

The above projects receive no core funding. Each have technological, labour, and other costs. I cover the financial overheads from my consulting revenues. We're very fortunate to have dedicated volunteers too.

From starting with nothing, growing our impact hugely, and arriving in a position of massive influence - it's time to go to the next level!

There's a lot at stake for disabled people at the moment. Through our hubs of knowledge, our social media influence, our support networks, and our strategic partnerships; we now need you, our Inclusion Patrons, to support our plans.
Tiers
YOU GET TO BE AN 'INCLUSION AMBASSADOR'
$1 or more per month 2 patrons
Now that's kudos! After pledging, you'll receive a link to join our 'inner circle' email list - AKA our 'Inclusion Ambassador' list. Then whenever we need feedback or suggestions (or getting out of jail - just joking), you'll be our go-to guys. We also might let this list know about upcoming plans for our projects, before we announce them publicly


*This all goes for any pledge from $1 up.

COFFEE COMPROMISE
$3 or more per month 0 patrons
By drinking one less high street cup of coffee in a month, you not only get to support inclusion, but you cut down on that bad caffeine habit. It's a huge win:win!
ALCOHOL TOLERABLE
$5 or more per month 1 patron
We're not crazy enough to ask you to stop drinking. It's a vice many people enjoy after a long week of graft. However one less tipple, or even a few cans at home, could save you the $5 for this monthly pledge level. Not to underestimate the warm and fluffy feeling of becoming an 'Inclusion Ambassador'. Right? High-five :-)
UPPING THE ANTI
$10 or more per month 0 patrons
As your generosity increases, our appreciation does too. We've even created new and separate rewards for individuals and corporate partners.


Individuals - I'll be running a private Q&A via Google Hangout (or an equivalent software solution). Here you can ask me anything about inclusion, blogging, entrepreneurship, and so forth. 


* This goes for any pledge from here on in.


Corporate Partners - Beyond the thrill of supporting us, we can offer you more! Upon signing up, you'll be listed (with your website URL link to boot) on our Disability Horizons resources page (http://disabilityhorizons.com/resources). Connecting you with our Horizons consumer community.

THIS IS GETTING EMOTIONAL
$25 or more per month 1 patron
Seriously. Thank you for supporting us with such a generous pledge. You are making such a difference!


Individuals - As mentioned above. You get access to our Q&A. Plus a whole lot more gratitude from our awesome team.  


Corporate Partners - You will not only be listed on our Disability Horizons resources page, but we'll include your awesome news/updates on our social media channels too. Lucky devils :-)

THE FINAL DANCE
$75 or more per month 0 patrons
We have to stop on this tier. I'm going to feel too much gratitude and explode! Nobody should be this generous. However, anyone who is so amazingly crazy, thank you for your support. That is from all of our 'I for Inclusion' team!


Individuals - If the Q&A isn't giving enough support for any challenges you're having, we'll spend more time solving it. No sweat! Let's arrange a Skype or phone call.


Corporate Partners - Alongside the resource listing and social media shout-outs, we'll publish a golden Disability Horizons article about your fantastic product/service/organisation. This is great for you and our community too.

Goals
$28 of $3,000 per month
Goal: $3000 per month

I still do all of the above for that teenage me. For the many disabled people and families just like me. For anyone who might become disabled. For those looking for a positive message. Looking for support during the tough times. Looking for answers. Trying to be the best human they can be.

I'd like to cut back on some of my consulting work though. So I can concentrate on 'I For Inclusion'. I'd also like to cover the costs of our technology. I'd like to pay my die-hard team better. I'd also like to thank the volunteers with gifts from time to time.

I've set the different monthly pledges (patrons support us with a recurring monthly payment) to span all possibilities. I'm guessing our corporate partners can and will go for the higher amounts (benefitting from our marketing proposition too). Meanwhile our everyday community members can stay at the lower affordable levels, and still benefit from being in our 'inner circle'.

So let's get this monster fed, and go change the world!

A million thank you's guys :-)

Martyn
1 of 1
I for Inclusion has one clear aim - to make sure our society is fully inclusive of all disabled people, no matter who they are, where they're from or what their circumstances are.

Do you remember being a teenager? It's hard to forget those days right? Or maybe you just blocked it all out? The low self esteem. The peer pressure. The trying to fit in.

We all craved acceptance and inclusion...

My teenage years

When I was growing up, I had the additional factor of being disabled to deal with. Don't worry, I don't do sob stories! Unfortunately though, when I was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy at 18 months, the medical profession did. My parents were told bleak things.

As I grew older, medical treatments did improve. With antibiotics, cough machines, spinal fusion surgery and so forth (I didn’t say they were pleasant!) us SMA-ers did far better health wise.

I went on to mainstream school. Though the local secondary school wasn't accessible, so I had to travel further away each day. My family and friends were very supportive. I had great health, education, and social care professionals around me. I used lots of assistive technology (my electric wheelchair is still my everything).

My parents did all the fighting for this. I had to learn that skill later on in life. Still, I remember the teenage angst alongside needing so much personal care support (not easy for mum and dad either I imagine).

It was hard not always being able to conform to the peer pressure. I remember one time slamming shut my bedroom door, to have to then call out for help to open it again (kinda funny). When out socialising it took a lot of transport planning, and a reliance on someone to help me wee.

There was was definitely a feeling of not fitting in.

The Bigger and Ongoing Issues

Onwards to this day. It is said 13 million people have a disability or long term health condition in the UK alone. The advances in medical treatments are giving people longer and better lives. They are not eradicating disability.

Whilst this is great news, there's still a few problems to overcome! For example:

- Disabled people (and indeed many other marginalised groups) are currently facing huge government cuts, a declining quality in vital public services, and a general feeling from the media that we're a burden.

- Despite the accessibility improvements over recent decades to housing, transport, education, employment (leading to financial independence), leisure pursuits, and social inclusion - statistics still show how far behind disabled people are when compared to their non disabled peers.

Our Solution

'I for Inclusion' believes in one simple premise. Every person has a passion and purpose in life. It is the responsibility of a modern society to include everybody. We should all participate and contribute in our communities. With no exceptions.

For businesses the widely known concept of the 'purple pound' has helped promote this solution. Apparently the spending power of disabled households is £249bn! Therefore accessible products and services, coupled with disabled employees, is very attractive for corporations to benefit from.

Not to ignore the political power of 13m disabled voters. Giving strong economic and political reasons for inclusion.

Lets not forget either how disability could touch anyone at any time. So it makes sense to back inclusion, if only for selfish reasons.

Our Progress

When I was that scared teenager, I wished for positive role models. To have seen someone like me, older and achieving, would have helped so much. To learn about accessing government funding, managing carers, using assistive technology, researching accessible places, and other relevant knowledge...

It would have meant the world!

My Blog

So in 2009 I started my blog, www.martynsibley.com, and social media outreach. Using words, pictures and videos; I told my personal story. The stories of going to university, living in London, travelling the world, running my own business, learning to drive, managing carers, and generally staying healthy. Also the stories of ill health, independent living stresses, career hurdles, inaccessible holidays, and all of the other low moments.

As a result I've had 100,000 web visitors, attracted thousands of social media followers, daily engagement on email, and lots of great fun. I've been invited on BBC breakfast, written for national newspapers (regularly contributing to the Huffington Post), and presented tv shows. I'm now a published author with my travel memoir 'Everything is Possible'. Plus I'm podcasting with interviews of awesome influential disabled people.

Governments, businesses and charities have asked me for inclusion advice. I'm an associate of Open Inclusion and We Are Purple (who work with big brands). I sit on steering groups for health, housing, transport, tourism and beyond.

As a result I was voted Britains third most influential disabled person in the 'disability Power 100' list.

Disability Horizons

On a holiday from my London day job (pre self-employment), my SMA buddy Srin and I roadtripped around California and Las Vegas. During that fateful trip we sat on the beach in Los Angeles and dreamt up a disability lifestyle magazine. It'd be like my blog, but from other disabled people, with different impairments, and different experiences.

In April 2011 we launched Disability Horizons. We wrote some articles in the beginning. We begged friends to write. We begged people to read it. We begged and we borrowed and we blagged.

Disability Horizons has had over 500,000 web visitors worldwide. We have 20,000 followers on twitter alone. The magazine shares positive stories. Showcasing how life looks when independence and inclusion are in place.

We've been featured in the Guardian and on the BBC. Through our specialism of independence and inclusion, we've connected our community with governments, businesses, and charities.

We're also supporting other disabled people to run Disability Horizons in other languages and countries. It's currently in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Arabic. Raya, editor of http://disabilityhorizons.ae, is seeing amazing growth and media attention.

At present I'm the CEO of Disability Horizons. Srin is the CEO of another project we Co Founded together called Accomable. It's been a great journey!

Disability United

Since launching Disability Horizons, the world hasn't been quite so rosy for disabled people. The United Nations are investigating the UK government for breaching the 'UN convention for the rights of people with disabilities'.

In June 2016 I decided we had to act. So we launched a campaigning website called Disability United. Our articles and social media presence raise awareness of injustice and promote fairness.

Our first research project uncovered that many CCG's (Clinical Commissioning Groups) would consider putting disabled people into care homes. Talk about going back 60 years. Our article hit the national media and was referenced in the shadow report to the UN. A few CCGs have subsequently changed their policies already :-)

Our editor is now on the Independent Living Strategy Group, chaired by Baroness Jane Campbell. So we're right in the thick of the political battle. Plus we collaborate heavily with our fellow disability organisations.

Synergy trumps rivalry, every time.

Why We Need Your Support

The above projects receive no core funding. Each have technological, labour, and other costs. I cover the financial overheads from my consulting revenues. We're very fortunate to have dedicated volunteers too.

From starting with nothing, growing our impact hugely, and arriving in a position of massive influence - it's time to go to the next level!

There's a lot at stake for disabled people at the moment. Through our hubs of knowledge, our social media influence, our support networks, and our strategic partnerships; we now need you, our Inclusion Patrons, to support our plans.

Recent posts by Martyn Sibley

Tiers
YOU GET TO BE AN 'INCLUSION AMBASSADOR'
$1 or more per month 2 patrons
Now that's kudos! After pledging, you'll receive a link to join our 'inner circle' email list - AKA our 'Inclusion Ambassador' list. Then whenever we need feedback or suggestions (or getting out of jail - just joking), you'll be our go-to guys. We also might let this list know about upcoming plans for our projects, before we announce them publicly


*This all goes for any pledge from $1 up.

COFFEE COMPROMISE
$3 or more per month 0 patrons
By drinking one less high street cup of coffee in a month, you not only get to support inclusion, but you cut down on that bad caffeine habit. It's a huge win:win!
ALCOHOL TOLERABLE
$5 or more per month 1 patron
We're not crazy enough to ask you to stop drinking. It's a vice many people enjoy after a long week of graft. However one less tipple, or even a few cans at home, could save you the $5 for this monthly pledge level. Not to underestimate the warm and fluffy feeling of becoming an 'Inclusion Ambassador'. Right? High-five :-)
UPPING THE ANTI
$10 or more per month 0 patrons
As your generosity increases, our appreciation does too. We've even created new and separate rewards for individuals and corporate partners.


Individuals - I'll be running a private Q&A via Google Hangout (or an equivalent software solution). Here you can ask me anything about inclusion, blogging, entrepreneurship, and so forth. 


* This goes for any pledge from here on in.


Corporate Partners - Beyond the thrill of supporting us, we can offer you more! Upon signing up, you'll be listed (with your website URL link to boot) on our Disability Horizons resources page (http://disabilityhorizons.com/resources). Connecting you with our Horizons consumer community.

THIS IS GETTING EMOTIONAL
$25 or more per month 1 patron
Seriously. Thank you for supporting us with such a generous pledge. You are making such a difference!


Individuals - As mentioned above. You get access to our Q&A. Plus a whole lot more gratitude from our awesome team.  


Corporate Partners - You will not only be listed on our Disability Horizons resources page, but we'll include your awesome news/updates on our social media channels too. Lucky devils :-)

THE FINAL DANCE
$75 or more per month 0 patrons
We have to stop on this tier. I'm going to feel too much gratitude and explode! Nobody should be this generous. However, anyone who is so amazingly crazy, thank you for your support. That is from all of our 'I for Inclusion' team!


Individuals - If the Q&A isn't giving enough support for any challenges you're having, we'll spend more time solving it. No sweat! Let's arrange a Skype or phone call.


Corporate Partners - Alongside the resource listing and social media shout-outs, we'll publish a golden Disability Horizons article about your fantastic product/service/organisation. This is great for you and our community too.