Gearing Up Expo provides people with disability, their families, case workers, teachers and carers the opportunity to:
- Connect to a range of services to support the life that you want to live
- Explore education, employment and training options
- Explore lifestyle and recreation options
- Get the information you need to make choices about your necessary supports
- Celebrate the diversity, talents and achievements of people with disability
From humble beginnings in 2006 the Gearing Up for Choice and Control Expo has expanded to become one of the key events for the disability sector in Tasmania.
It was an initiative of the National Disability Coordination Officer (NDCO) programme in Northern Tasmania as an easy way for people with disability, their families and carers to find out about education, employment and recreational opportunities available in their local area. Together with a committed and hard working team from various disability and advocacy groups the Expos were held in Launceston and the North-West coast annually from 2006-2008.
In 2009 close collaboration with the NDCO from Southern Tasmania saw the expansion of the Expos to Hobart. A Southern Gearing Up committee was formed to provide local input and expertise. Hence it became a state-wide event.
Since 2009, the Gearing Up Expo has been a bi-annual event and over that time has had the support of many individuals and organisations to ensure it remains responsive to the community, innovative and relevant. It has provided much needed information to 1000’s of individuals, and has had the involvement of 100’s of organisations and services, both local and interstate.
Giving people the opportunity to try out some activities, and showcasing the talents and abilities of people with disability have always been strong features of the Gearing Up Expos. Wheelchair basketball, table cricket and wheelchair obstacle courses have been favourites. Attendees have also been entertained by music, dance and choir performances. The Gearing Up Art Exhibitions have also highlighted the many creative talents.
With the introduction and transition to full scheme NDIS there is more reason than ever for the Gearing Up Expos. Connecting to service providers, gathering information and being inspired by your dreams is important for choice and control. Hence the 2015 Expos have been further expanded to Gearing UP for Choice and Control expos. The Expos will play an important role in enabling people with disability to have choice and control over the necessary services and support they require to live the life they want.