It’s here! Our Wheels at Work Day.
It is a campaign that raises awareness and money for Spinal Research. This is the day we’ve been waiting for, we are an ambassador for Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research (SMSR) and wanted to do something extra to put our accessibility and social responsibility values into place once again. We are very excited to welcome The Mayor of Aylesbury today, and Richard Carr from Bucks Radio! Charlotte and Sam from Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research are also here to show their support.
We are spending the day in wheelchairs, having a usual workday, making sure we can access things such as the entrances, kitchen, meeting room, and printer, all while raising awareness of the daily experiences of wheelchair users.
Two of our main values here at Framework Digital are accessibility and social responsibility. We believe that businesses have a responsibility to give back to the community, look after our local area and the people who share this space with us. We also believe everyone has a right to access websites and their workplace, and support these views through charity work such as today. We are ambassadors for Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research, a choice synonymous with Aylesbury’s values and a large part of their history with Stoke Mandeville and the Paralympics.
Thursday 28/09/23 15:30
Wheelchairs and our sponsorship t-shirts arrive with the lovely Kate from SMSR. We’ve measured up to our desks – we’re ready for tomorrow!
Friday 29/09/23 09:00
We arrive at work and slip into our wheelchairs to start our day. Getting in the main doors was fine – the main office door however was more of a challenge than we thought.
9:45 Tea Break
Getting water was fine, but where do we put it? Mike’s wheelchair needs a carrier on the back like Tomas’.
Tomas reaches the mugs just fine (we predicted they may be too high), but surprisingly can’t see the light on the machine that signals when it’s ready to make coffee. Whoops… We also hadn’t thought about reusable coffee cups with lids. Becky carries it this time but its definitely something we’ll think about from now on.
10:00 Reflection on 1st hour
The wheelchairs are surprisingly comfortable to work in. Thanks Gerald Simons Healthcare.
The Mayor is here! So lovely to meet him and discuss the local area and what we are doing here today. We discuss website accessibility as one of our specialties – The Mayor has said what a great connection to make between workplace accessibility and website accessibility.
We head to the café in the building for lunch – no hitches here, just delicious food in an accessible space. The staff asked why we were in wheelchairs for the day and said they used to work in the Spinal Centre in Stoke Mandeville. We chatted about the social etiquette in helping wheelchair users and how everybody is different.
We went to a local supermarket for office supplies, the terrain on the way there was noticeably more difficult to navigate than indoors!
15:30 Reflections and internal team debrief
We discussed what turned out to be quite an eventful day and shared our findings and observations so far – including a blister!
“Spending the last few hours in a wheelchair makes me more aware of differences to the work day of people with different abilities which otherwise cannot be seen.”
“We wanted to do something to raise money for a local charity that is close to our hearts,” said Tomas Pukalski. “Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research is funding vital research. Accessibility is one of our core values, and we believe that everyone should have access to the internet. We ensure our websites are accessible to all.”
We’ve enjoyed our day raising awareness of accessibility partnered with Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research and look forward to more events in the future.