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Welcome to the Welcome Accessibility & Events website. This company focuses on accessibility and inclusion. For Marianne Dijkshoorn, accessibility and inclusion revolve around equal experience and participation. After all, nobody should go on an outing just because the venue has an accessible toilet. You go somewhere because you have a purpose, such as attending a show or collecting a passport.

How it began with the first accessible festival.

In 2008, the first accessible festival took place in the Netherlands, and Marianne (unconsciously) played a role in it. She wanted to attend this festival, organized on a hill, with her ‘seemingly healthy’ friends. Climbing a hill is a challenge for her due to her disability—she has difficulty walking. She found a receptive ear within the organisation, and thus, she made a festival accessible for people with disabilities for the first time in the Netherlands.

Why specialize in accessibility for events and leisure-related activities?
Marianne wanted to become an event organizer and pursued studies for it. The first accessible festival led to a specialization in accessibility. She is convinced that accessibility begins with hospitality and entails minimal costs. Her book, Make Your Event Accessible for Everyone, is filled with practical tips about hospitality.

Marianne Dijkshoorn’s approach

For Marianne, accessibility consists of three phases:

  1. Accessibility: This concerns providing information via a website or app about the facilities available at the location.
  2. Passability: This concerns an equal experience at the location: can you follow the stage experience, independently order something at the bar, and use an (accessible) toilet?
  3. Exitability: This concerns safety: Is there a plan to evacuate people with physical, auditory, visual, and cognitive impairments from the location safely in case of an emergency? People with (temporary) disabilities are less self-reliant in emergencies.

Services you can ask Marianne Dijkshoorn for.

You can ask Marianne for the following:

  • An interactive speaking contribution in Dutch or English about accessibility and inclusion on various topics.
  • An audit of your location. Accessibility is assessed from the customer journey perspective. If the site is accessible, an Accessible Location certificate is awarded.
  • An experiential tour of your location with wheelchairs and white canes, among other tools. This allows your employees to experience what it’s like to visit your site with a disability and how they can contribute to better navigability.
  • Advice for a more accessible event.
  • Purchase of a wheelchair mat.
  • Purchase a menu card for the bar so people can point to their order instead of shouting at the bartender.

Wheelchair Mat

When a non-disabled person visits a restaurant or an event, a chair is often provided. A wheelchair user brings their own chair. If they haven’t been accounted for (which is frequently the case), the wheelchair user ends up somewhere, for example, in a walkway, posing various safety risks.

You can designate a spot for a wheelchair user with a so-called wheelchair mat.
A wheelchair user has a much more hospitable experience if a spot has been designated for them. It also enhances the equal experience for a wheelchair user if they can sit next to someone within the audience sections.

The wheelchair mat is custom printed, with the option to use the organisation’s colours and logo. The photo shows a wheelchair mat printed in black and white, but all colours are available. Contrasting colours are advisable so that the mat stands out to all visitors. Currently, we can only deliver within Europe.

The large mat measures 95 × 95 cm and is used for venues with a theatre setup. These mats cost €99.95 each, excluding VAT and including shipping within the Netherlands. Shipping abroad is possible, but the price excludes shipping costs.

The small mat measures 70 × 70 cm and is a good solution for dining and conference tables. These mats cost €89.95 each, excluding VAT and including shipping within the Netherlands. Shipping abroad is possible, but the price excludes shipping costs. This mat is smaller, so people can place their legs under the table.

You’ll receive a sturdy storage tube holding four mats with every order; it measures 100 × 11 cm.

Do you want to buy a mat, or are you looking for more information? Please email info@geenbeperkingmeer.com.

Projects where you might know Marianne Dijkshoorn.

Marianne has been involved in the accessibility and inclusion of various topics:

  • Events: festivals, conferences, and trade fairs.
  • Buildings: stadiums, town halls, museums, stations, offices, and hotels.
  • Outdoor spaces: tourist attractions, playgrounds, and residential areas.

Marianne’s work for a more accessible world did not go unnoticed, and she earned the following:

  • A finalist position at the Dutch Freelancer of the Year Awards in 2023.
  • Jury member at the Dutch National Event Awards since 2023.
  • Fourth place at the Rotterdam Businesswoman Award in 2020/2021.
  • Nomination for “The Her Abilities Award” in 2019.
  • Nomination for the Viva400 Award in 2018.
  • Winner of the Wooden Giraffe Award in 2011 for emerging event talent.

Marianne Dijkshoorn, as a person.

Despite her disability, Marianne wants to make the most out of life. She desires to leave the world a bit more beautiful and accessible than she found it. She believes everyone can participate if we think more from the hospitality standpoint.

Collaborating with Marianne Dijkshoorn

Do you want to collaborate with Marianne, or do you have another question or idea? Leave your details below, and we will contact you soon.

    Welkom Toegankelijkheid & Evenementen doesn’t publish a newsletter. However, news updates are shared on Marianne Dijkshoorn’s LinkedIn page regularly.

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