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In partnership with

project partners image RCPCH BACCH Contact a Family RCGP RCLST BACDIS BACDIS RCN BPNA RCoP Council for Disabled Children BPS NNPCF RCPSYCH DOH

Disability Matters

Disability Matters is a free e-learning resource for the UK workforce. 

It consists of three programmes:

  • Disability Matters: all Disability Matters e-learning sessions

  • Disability Matters Learning Packages: e-learning sessions that have been grouped together to meet particular learning needs.

  • Disability Matters Resources: Face-to-face training resource packs


You can download an easy read overview of the programme by clicking on Disability Matters Easy Read Overview.


These young people have something to say. 

Are you listening?



A parent’s perspective 

“See the world in a better way” 



Why Disability Matters Matters

A Poem by AdsthePoet




Disability Matters – the launch event 3rd February 2015 

Making an empowering world for disabled people



What is Disability Matters?

Launched in February 2015, Disability Matters is an innovative suite of free resources to support those who work, volunteer or engage with disabled children and young people (from 0 to 25 years) and their families.  It seeks to address the barriers that make society disabling.  These challenges are faced by those with either physical and/or intellectual disabilities.

Developed by disabled young people, parent carers and other experts, Disability Matters arranges individual modules into helpful bite-sized learning packages so that the training offered matches the needs of specific individuals, groups, organisations and sectors.  It offers practical advice about supporting disabled children, young people and their families to achieve the outcomes that matter to them.

Our Aims:

•To raise the profile of disability within the UK and internationally.

•To increase awareness of the issues that affect the everyday lives of disabled children, young people and their families.

•To help people who work, volunteer or engage with disabled young people identify creative and practical ways to overcome the social barriers that challenge them in their everyday lives.

•To equip those who work, volunteer or engage with disabled young people to support them as effectively as they can to achieve what matters most to them.

•To help employers to improve the ways in which they work with and respond to disabled young people and their families by supporting their workforce – both paid and voluntary - to implement creative solutions to identifiable barriers.


Disability Matters is designed to support organisations, services, workers and volunteers across a range of sectors to develop the communication and problem-solving skills required to engage confidently with disabled children and young people, to hear what they tell us that they need and to respond positively, warmly and with an inclusive welcome.

Through words, pictures and signs, disabled children, young people and their families challenge us all to reflect on our own attitudes and beliefs. There are practical tips for us all. Together we can make a positive difference that matters.

We are proud to work in partnership with disabled children, young people and parent carers to bring messages for those working in the following sectors:


Accordion 1

How to use Disability Matters

Disability Matters offers online learning sessions (mostly 20-40 minutes) on a wide range of topics to help people reflect, challenge and change their own fears, idea, attitudes, beliefs and behaviours towards disabled people.

All the sessions can be completed as a ‘one off’ or ‘stand-alone’. Alternatively, you can sign up to the Disability Matters learning community and complete several sessions or a Learning Package that can be recorded in a personal learning account. Creating an account allows you to keep a record of your learning and to print certificates to evidence your learning.

The more actively you reflect on the stories and materials in Disability Matters, the better equipped you will become to welcome, include, empower and support disabled children and people of all ages.

Why do we need Disability Matters?

Disabled children and young people (from 0 to 25 years) and their families face many barriers in their everyday lives; from social events and sports to accessing health services and coping at school, college or work.  To bring about the changes we think will make a positive, practical and lasting difference, we need to help those who work, volunteer or engage with disabled children and young people to gain confidence they need to be as effective as they can and want to be.

The Challenge Facing Society Today

Here are some statistics that show why we need Disability Matters:

  • 70% of workers in the UK feel they need to learn more about disability for their work

  • 61% of people in the UK say they are not confident communicating with a child who is disabled

  • 80% of people in the UK think business organisations should provide more training to ensure their staff feel confident about working with disabled people

  • 180 disability hate crimes are committed every day in the UK

We believe that people across the UK are looking to change society for the better on disability.  Disability Matters wants to make a significant contribution to the way in which the UK challenges current attitudes, fears and insecurities about disability.  Disabled children and young people, their families, friends and other carers should receive the support they need on the issues that matter to them.

Who will find Disability Matters helpful?

Disability Matters provides employers, staff and volunteers across the UK and internationally with free access to a suite of high quality online and group learning resources covering a broad range of topics related to disability.

We want to engage with individuals and organisations in all of these sectors and groups to help effect positive and lasting social change:

  • Health

  • Social care

  • Education

  • Employment

  • Charities and advocacy groups

  • Youth, community and faith groups

  • Criminal justice

  • Transport and travel

  • Retail

  • Arts, leisure, recreation and sport

  • Family, friends and other carers

Top 10 benefits for individuals

  • Increased awareness and understanding of disability;

  • Confidence to tackle challenging situations positively by identifying and using creative problem solving skills and techniques;

  • Developed by disabled young people, family carers and other experts;

  • Credible, high quality learning resources to challenge and inspire;

  • Supported by a consortium of well-respected partner organisations;

  • Easy to use: with stand-alone modules that can be grouped for their relevance to you and your situation;

  • A range of real life case studies are used to inform your learning;

  • Flexible approach with online or face to face learning opportunities;

  • Free to register and learn;

  • Certificates can be printed as proof of completion.

Top 10 benefits for organisations

  • Help to ensure that your organisation meets the needs of disabled people who work, volunteer or are members of your organisation;

  • Increase awareness and understanding of disability among your paid and volunteer workforce;

  • Improve the ability of your organisation to respond positively to those disabled children and young people (from 0 to 25 years) and their family carers who are your service users, clients or customers;

  • Help those who work or volunteer with your organisation to achieve even better levels of customer care;

  • Ensure that your organisation meets established industry standards for training on disability;

  • Flexible approach: learning packages can be delivered as an online resource to guarantee consistency across your organisation regardless of the geographical spread of your workforce or as face to face training for groups based in a single location;

  • Provide those who work or volunteer for your organisation with credible high quality learning resources;

  • Developed by disabled young people, family carers and other experts and supported by a consortium of well-respected partner organisations;

  • Easy to use with off the shelf learning packages as well as the ability for us to build a learning package that meets the specific needs of your organisation;

  • Help to encourage and drive positive sector wide change to help support disabled children, young people and family carers to achieve what matters to them.

What do our learners say about Disability Matters?

84% of learners say Disability Matters was helpful or very helpful*

77% of learners say Disability Matters boosted their confidence*


Testimonials since Disability Matters launched in February 2015

“Useful and interesting content.  Well-presented and easy to navigate.”

“Eye opening and empowering.”

“It has made me consider how I should listen.”

“Made me think about my choice of words and helped increase confidence in asking and talking about conditions.”

“Excellent!  This module shows that impairment doesn’t need to disable you.”

“I have never had the confidence to work with children with certain hidden disabilities because I didn’t have the knowledge or skills.  These short e-learning sessions are very good and I can’t wait to do some more next week.  Thank you for a wonderful resource.”

“Really useful to hear from young people and their families about their experiences.”

*Figures quoted were correct as of August 2015


We are trialling Live Chat as a new form of support.

The service will be available from:

Monday to Friday
11 am till 1 pm
2 pm till 4 pm

Go to Live Chat

We are assessing our support services. Please help us by providing feedback and completing this short questionnaire.

Go to Feedback form