8 ways we’re making SEWF22 an accessible and inclusive event
One of our aims organising SEWF22 (28-29 September) is to inspire and connect purpose-driven leaders and social entrepreneurs with each other, to collaborate and create positive change in our world. And to ensure that everyone has a great experience at all SEWF 2022 events, we’re working together with our 2022 Co-host, White Box Enterprises to make our events as accessible and inclusive as possible.
Here are eight (8) ways we’re making accessibility a priority during SEWF22
1. We have a Diversity and Inclusion Committee guiding us
From the outset of planning for SEWF 2022, a Diversity and Inclusion Committee was established to help us identify outcomes to support the diverse and inclusive growth of the entrepreneurial community, ensuring the event’s diversity and inclusion framework and principles from businesses and speakers are actively involved in the design and delivery of the event. This committee provides expertise and knowledge to help guide planning.
2. You can attend and participate from anywhere in the world
Did you know SEWF22 will be a hybrid event? The event will be held live at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) as well as online via Hopin. This will allow as many participants as possible to engage in inspiring conversations and informative panels, live from their own homes and offices or in Brisbane. This not only reduces the need for travel (and with that our overall carbon footprint) but will ensure the event is also accessible to those who can’t attend in person.
3. We’ve chosen an accessible venue
If you’ll be attending in person, the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) is easily accessible via public transport and has a car park conveniently located undercover with direct lift access to the center’s convention and exhibition facilities. The main entrance to the Australian Social Enterprise Youth Forum and SEWF22 at BCEC is via Grey Street. Four steps lead to the main entry automatic doors and a ramp is located on the right-hand side. We’ll also have signage and volunteers to assist you in finding your way around the event center if you need assistance. Support workers and service animal requirements will also be accommodated.
We’re committed to complying with Australian accessibility standards including spacious entrances, functioning lifts, wide corridors, automatic doors, accessible bathroom facilities and clear walkways free of obstacles.
4. Feeling overwhelmed? We’ll have a quiet room onsite for you to unwind
We know that events can easily get overwhelming and loud. Taking sensory overload into account, we’ll be providing our SEWF22 participants with access to a Quiet Room – separate from the bustling noise of the event. The Quiet Room will provide a calm, ambient space to allow you to unwind, take a break and have a breather. All sessions also have a buffer between them to give people time to move between rooms and take a break.
5. Sign language and CC captions will be in place
Presentations at the venue as well as our online experience on Hopin will meet both global and Australian accessibility standards as we’ll ensure that all content is ‘perceivable, operable, understandable and robust’.
There will be Auslan interpretation for in-person participants in the ballroom and auditorium where the main stages are and front row seats will be reserved to enable a clear view for people who are deaf and hard of hearing. We’ll be ensuring that all rooms are evenly lit whilst avoiding strobe and flashing lights.
Visual materials (such as videos) and presentations will include closed captions, verbal descriptions and physical alternatives.
Hearing loops are installed in all meeting rooms at the event venue and are available on request. Please let us know if you will require this service.
If participating online, please note that captions are only available on the desktop version of Hopin, and it is currently not available on the mobile application.
6. Registration for SEWF22 is easy and accessible
Participants can easily register for the event online via Humanitix.
Following the principle of “always ask – never assume”, we ask all our participants to describe any specific requirements or special needs they have, so we can ensure their needs are being met throughout the event. The Humanitix booking platform not only provides alt-text to images and a screen reader option but further highlights all accessibility details important before purchasing a ticket. This includes access to the venue, accessible parking, general parking, public transport, and venue drop-off points.
Humanitix will honour companion cards as we provide support workers with access to the event.
7. Bursaries and discounted tickets are available to enable more people to access the event
Thanks to the generous support of SEWF22 bursary partners and sponsors, a number of bursaries have been made available, reducing barriers to access and increasing participation. Bursary categories for SEWF22 include:
- Physical Pass Bursaries: First Nations (Australia), Rural and Remote (Australia), Youth, Financial Hardship.
- Digital Pass Bursaries: First Nations (Australia), Rural and Remote (Australia), Low income, lower middle income or conflict-affected countries, Youth, Financial Hardship.
The second round of SEWF22 Digital Pass bursaries is now open (29 August – 12 September). Please note that bursaries (Physical Pass and Digital Pass) for people resident in Australia closed in June 2022.
8. Our entire program ⏤ from speakers to session topics ⏤ showcases diversity
We aren’t limiting the entire event to just one topic alone. We’ve got five key themes that we’ll be exploring at SEWF22 including Climate Solutions, Excellence & Failure, Indigenous Social Enterprise, Policy & Systems and Unusual Suspects
We are committed to delivering a high-quality, inclusive hybrid experience for all members of the global social enterprise community. Join fellow purpose-led people, policymakers, philanthropists, intermediaries and entrepreneurs at SEWF22 this September to connect, learn and be inspired!