GetAboutAble builds capacity to hold more accessible and inclusive events
Case Study of Enlighten Festival and ACT Events

We worked with Events ACT

The Enlighten Festival lights up autumn in Canberra (ACT). A major event on the ACT Calendar, it attracts over 250,000 people each year. 

Project Goal - Improved accessibility and inclusion at Enlighten Festival and beyond

In 2022, Events ACT engaged GetAboutAble to build their capacity to deliver more accessible and inclusive experiences that enable people with a disability  to attend ACT events such as Enlighten with confidence.

The Enlighten Festival includes Ballon Spectacular an event showcasing hot air ballons flying in the early morning above Lake Burley Griffith. The 2022 mascot balloon was an orange sloth, shown on this photograph.

GetAboutAble's recommendations to improve accessibility and inclusion at Enlighten Festival

In 2022, the Enlighten Festival encountered several challenges including:

  • Limited knowledge of existing accessibility and inclusion features
  • Unclear communication of relevant accessibility information for attendees with disability
  • Event program, wayfinding and pathways not optimised for the accessibility and inclusion of people with disability

Given the diverse range of lived experience of disability across our team, GetAboutAble approaches access and inclusion from the perspective of the full range of disability, including neurodiversity and hidden disabilities as well as vision, hearing, and mobility assistance needs. Events ACT engaged us to develop an Event Review and Recommendations Report to improve accessibility and inclusion at the Enlighten Festival and other major events.

GetAboutAble also engaged members of the public with disabilities to provide their feedback on their access and inclusion experiences of these events.

We developed a tailored report that collated feedback, identified improvements, and suggested quick wins and medium to long-term actions to drive improvements. It included:
  • Information on available accessibility and inclusion features
  • Recommendations for enhancing accessibility and inclusion across the program of the Festival
  • Guidance on communicating accessibility and inclusion information to attendees, including language, signage, and graphics enhancements
“Enlighten has the potential to be fully enjoyed by people with mobility, hearing, or vision impairments, as well as by people with various sensitivities and other neurodiverse conditions.”
Extract of the final report - Quote from a patron with lived experience of disability
A warning sign indicating that one of the 2022 Enlighten installations included Flashing Lights and indicating "Viewer Discretion is Advised"

Successful Case Study: A boost in accessibility and inclusion for major events​ in the ACT

The  impact of our recommendations was substantial. It allowed the 80,000 people with disability living in the ACT and all the interstate attendees with access needs to enjoy an enhanced experience at ACT events. 

Recommended improvements included creating suitable designated viewing locations, improving wayfinding, sharing more relevant event information on the Enlighten website, and more. 

The fact that Events ACT expressed their intention to apply those learnings to all their events, as seen in the case of Floriade Festival a few months later, demonstrates the project’s relevance for future events. This success highlights the importance of inclusive and accessible event planning, setting a valuable precedent for future projects in the same domain.

GetAboutAble helped Events ACT Start Where They Are and now the journey continues! A year and a half later, GetAboutAble launched a promotion campaign for the Floriade Festival as an accessible highlight of any visit to Canberra in Spring 2023.

Get Started with GetAboutAble

If you’re ready to make a positive impact on your event and create a success story like Enlighten Festival, GetAboutAble is here to guide you.

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