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Be. Neighbourly

Be. is particularly supportive of the amazing grass roots project, Neighbours Day Aotearoa as community support is a key part of making New Zealand the most accessible place in the world. 1 in 5 New Zealanders live with a disability; so that's 1 in 5 of your neighbours! Below are some easy tips for making Neighbours Day 2013 accessible to all. Simply by doing these things, you'll be contributing to a 100% accessible New Zealand.

Blind neighbours or people with low vision

vision icon - eyeSomeone with a vision impairment may not even know that neighbour day is going on if they can’t see the flyers, or people getting together! If you know that a neighbour is blind or has low vision, why not go up to them and talk to them about any upcoming events – they’ll really appreciate it!

Flyers could be printed in large font or braille as well so that no one misses out. Large font is particularly helpful for older people whose vision may not be what it used to be!

Also sometimes you might wave at a neighbour and they may not respond… perhaps it is that they did not see you! Not all people who have low vision might look blind!

Wheelchair users or mobility impaired neighbours

mobility icon - wheelchairIf you are planning a neighbourhood get together, consider those who are wheelchair-users and may not be able to access a property with steps. Choose someone’s house, or a local park that has smooth surfaces, ramps, and wide open spaces.

Parents with pushchairs or young children

parents icon - pushchairParents with pushchairs have many of the same access needs as wheelchair-users, so consider how they might get around if your neighbour day party is in a small space without ramps. Why not pick a local park with lots of space, or someone’s house which is easily accessible for pushchairs, kids’ bikes and scooters! Wide spaces and smooth surfaces are key!

Deaf or hearing-impaired neighbours

hearing icon - earIf your neighbourhood get together is a noisy, loud party and you expect people to be drawn to the noise, Deaf or hearing-impaired neighbours might miss out! If you know that a neighbour is Deaf, why not learn some basic sign language to invite them along and make them feel welcome at the party. Sign Language is also very useful when the party gets too noisy and you can’t hear each other speak!

Older neighbours

silhouette of older personMany older people have at least one access need, so be mindful of this when organising events. Perhaps you could ask them what would be easiest for them to participate in any upcoming events.

Neighbours with learning and intellectual impairments

learning and intellectual icon - smiley faceIf a neighbour has a learning or intellectual impairment, it would be best to invite them in person to an upcoming event. Be warm and inviting and ensure that the event instructions are clear and logical – that will make it easier for all invitees!

Businesses participating in NDA

be welcome logoIf you’re a business or organisation participating in NDA, talk to us at Be. Accessible about how you can begin an accessibility journey through our Be. Welcome Assessment Programme. We’ll profile your access features on our website which is used by 5,000 people and counting; and help you ensure that your organisation is welcoming for the 20% of New Zealanders with access needs.