One of the first things we do when we plan for events is to estimate how much we can spend. Inclusion of persons with disabilities is something that must be considered right from the time you start planning the event so you know exactly how much money to raise. It's hard to 'retrofit' accessibility into an already planned event and make it fully inclusive. Each of the aspects discussed in this module requires incorporation into the budget.
Universal Design is design of products, environments, programmes and services so that they are usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design1. This is different from creating 'special' or specific options only for persons with disabilities. The options given in this module should not only be made available to persons with disabilities, because these are the kind of accommodations that even people without disabilities could use. The definition of universal design specifically excludes assistive aids and devices for persons with disabilities. It does not necessarily mean that facilities such as sign language interpretation and Braille text handouts are not needed at a universally designed event.
Accessibility implies that persons with disabilities can access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, information and communications, and to other facilities and services open or provided to the public. One needs to identify and eliminate obstacles and barriers to accessibility. There are specific areas where accessibility needs to be considered.next: Choosing a venue