My name is Martyn Sibley. As a regular guy who happens to use a wheelchair (due to Spinal Muscular Atrophy – SMA); I’ve experienced both societal exclusion and a feeling of inferiority. However through personal development and social entrepreneurship, I’ve achieved many of my personal and professional goals.
Now I’m empowering others to change the world!
I’m currently publishing my Purple Power newsletter (on the business, politics and culture of disability inclusion). So please do subscribe and join this thriving community of Purple Change Makers.
I’ve been voted regularly in the top 100 influential disabled people. I was co founder of accessible travel startup Accomable (exited to Airbnb) and I’m co founder of Disability Horizons magazine, Currently I’m CEO and co founder of the Purple Goat agency, as well as a content creator/author and advisor to social entrepreneurs/activists.
But it wasn’t always so amazing or simple. I have had to overcome major spinal fusion surgery, fundraise for vital mobility equipment, manage strangers to do my personal care, fought bouts of pneumonia, struggled through inaccessible housing, experienced weird societal stereotypes, and many other barriers.
Through resilience, hard work and trying to stay positive; I gained a BA in Economics, a masters degree in marketing, worked for a huge NGO in London, authored my “Everything is Possible” book, adventure travelled the world, and presented on the BBC.
It’s been awesome! I live life and work identically – smiling, empowering, learning, ambitious for new experiences, and all alongside great people.
Are you joining my community?! Jack Black certainly is…
The Big Vision
My vision is to live in a world without barriers, prejudice or discrimination. It’s about inclusion of all disabled people. All very well summed up in Positively Purple by Kate Nash.
I realised more recently after reading Citizens by Jon Alexander, and Doughnut economics by Kate Raworth that my vision underpins a far larger one of prosperity for all people and our planet.
Nice Idea Martyn, But How?
I believe it is possible, but everyone has a role to play in achieving this:
– Businesses have the responsibility for employing diverse workforces, and to create inclusive products and services. For example companies should employ people who reflect their societal customer base. Plus the Purple Pound is circa £280bn per year in the UK alone.
– Government have the responsibility to invest and empower citizens who are left behind by economic markets. For example I need a wheelchair and Personal Care Assistants to be an equal member of society. Once I have this, I can flourish to my full potential.
– We all have a responsibility too. Whoever you are, and whatever you do; please take action. Even if you haven’t experienced injustice, or don’t know anyone who has, you can help by challenging anything you see as unjust in this world.
Small actions will have a big impact. YOU can help change the world, benefiting EVERYONE in the process!
A Small Drop in a Large Ocean
I am just one person wanting to change things in this universe. My aim is to; inspire, inform and change the world around social issues. I hope you’ll join me.
Please send me any questions or feedback here by ‘giving me a shout‘.
Solutions come from collaboration, so lets change the world together!
And remember –
“Smiling is infectious,
You can catch it like the flu.
Someone smiled at me today,
And I started smiling too.”
Yay I am the first to comment! Ur Awesome. I found a video you made about the diamond theory (I was looking for the porters diamond theory though).
Thanks for the kind words 🙂
Did you find the other theory too?
My name is Karen, I am writing on behalf of Ability Lifting Solutions, a company that designs, manufactures and installs wheelchair and platform lifts for commercial and domestic use. I am managing online projects for the website http://www.abilitylifting.co.uk/ and am looking for partnership opportunities.
I have found your website https://martynsibley.com/ which is a valuable resource as it provides information and support for the less able people, their families and carers. Accessibility issues are a big challenge for those who have mobility problems and unfortunately nowadays people with disabilities are still significantly less likely to participate in social activities or attend various events, according to the Office for Disability Issues, HM Government.
Ability Lifting Solutions are dedicated to the work they do and are proud to be able to help many people enjoy better day to day experiences. The company has over 30 years of experience in the industry and work with accordance to the Equality Act 2010 (UK).
I believe your website visitors would benefit from learning about our services and therefore would like to discuss my business proposal to you. If you are interested to hear my ideas please contact me at your earliest convenience.
Online Projects Manager
I have literally only scanned through your website and inspiring employment course just now as I checked my emails and found a link to you through Scope.I’m relieved to have found you and your work.
I’m a 22 year old woman with left sided hemiplegia and a porencephalic cyst (excuse my spelling)
It’s refreshing to see someone like you do this work. I was, and in some ways still am; in limbo. My Cerebral Palsy affects mainly my hand and I can’t tell you how frustrating it is to find myself coming up against barriers to work and help and support. It makes me feel sick actually. I’m brave and determined so I keep going but it sure gets tough. I saw your first video you driving, it left me inspired. Again, I’ve come up against barriers here too. I’m unlucky in the sense that as my disability is relatively mild I can’t get support other than lower rate DLA which means learning to drive is a challenge, finding an instructor for one thing and then I find myself losing the motivation to want to learn as ‘Oh well, U’ll never afford a car and all the adaptions’
I wanted to message you now before I forget but I’ll be looking over your website more in the next few days.
Thank you for doing the work you do 🙂
my name is subin kurian from india.i have spinal musculr athrophya patient.i am 25years old.indian Dr asking not treatment in medical science…your story i will watching..i like it…your great man..your fight in disability.please give me y
I am most inspired by your story and your aim to change the world around disability. I have Dyslexia and Aspergers Syndrome and have suffered bullying for as long as I can remember. I am now currently at university and have suffered bullying even at this stage in my life which has made me more determined than ever in both my personal goal to change people’s attitude’s towards “hidden disability” and around social change for disabled people. In my experience AS is a disability people find very hard to understand, meaning every day life can be at times very difficult for me.
I am currently planning to precipitate in a number of volunteering schemes during my summer break and I would love to become involved in the work that you do.
Hi Martyn, after catching up with you again in Cambridge i wanted to see what you are doing now and i am completely blown away!! As someone who nows works in advocacy and children’s rights i totally understand where you are coming from, and totally impressed! Look forward to reading more!
I’m happy I could ran into you in the net. I accidentally discovered your website finding information about SMA. My name is Kasia and come from Poland. I’m the same situation as you.. have a disability called SMA. It appeals me your attitude – your THINKING :). You prove other people that their disbility can be a none barrier and show their life can be easier, it is amazing. You are mesmerising!! I’m really impressed. I’m glad that there are people like you, people emanating so positive energy.
Katarzyna (Kasia) Hawrylo
Thanks so much for these kind words. I will email you now as I am in Poland soon and would love to meet up
Hi Martyn. We have met before (Friday 2nd October,Sevenoaks) and i really enjoyed the session. I felt really happy after the talk at whizz kidz. You have really inspired me. And I will try to use your advice in my everyday life.
Hi Martyn, Great site. I’m 55 with SMA and have had a very interesting life here in Long Island, NY. I have 24/7 aide services and have great friends. Would love to chat sometime. BTW, I’m an ardent Arsenal fan for about 10 years now, but don’t hate me, at least I love the EPL, the best league on the globe! Cheers.
Hi Martyn. Enjoyed roaming around your website today thank you ! I am a 73 year old registered disabled guy. I find that positivity is a master key to a happier existence on this planet. My problem is I haven’t learn to capture, bottle or can it as well as you have. I watched your Diamond Programme & found that a very interesting concept.
I remember years ago when you were at junior school in needingworth my daughter helped raise money for your wheelchair, you have become an inspection to many and achieved so much , well done you and good luck in all you do xxx
Your support of any kind would be much appreciated. Thank you in advance for your time.
Please Help To Support. Thank you.
Thank you as ever for leading the way Martyn. I love your work and have dipped back into the blog today to find a quote for an article I’m writing. Keep up the good work.
Thanks so much. Hope you are well
Hello Martyn. My name is Leisa and I am from Iowa, USA. I ran across your site when I was searching for accessible vacations. I have never been out of the country and would love an adventure of dogsleds, snowmobiling, northern lights, etc. I have no idea how to begin and would love to read/speak more about your adventures. I am a paraplegic so am looking for wheelchair accessible adventures in cold weather.
Thanks for all that you are doing!