DAVE THOMPSON

Chief Ex­ec­u­tive of War­ring­ton Dis­abil­ity Part­ner­ship

Cheshire Life - - Goodwill To All -

In 1989, aged 31, Dave Thompson broke his neck whilst play­ing Amer­i­can Foot­ball. ‘I was sent to a re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tre to ad­just to life in a wheel­chair,’ he ex­plains. ‘I lost my business and my fu­ture seemed to be bas­ket weav­ing and flower ar­rang­ing.’ He ad­mits he was sui­ci­dal but his love for his wife and chil­dren pulled him through – as did slowly real­is­ing that life as he knew it wasn’t over. He has since ded­i­cated his life to help­ing other dis­abled peo­ple re­alise the same. In 1991 he co-founded the War­ring­ton In­for­ma­tion Group for the Dis­abled, which has grown into today’s War­ring­ton Dis­abil­ity Part­ner­ship. It pro­vides in­for­ma­tion and sup­port on ev­ery as­pect of liv­ing – and thriv­ing – with a dis­abil­ity, much of it through its Cen­tre for In­de­pen­dent Liv­ing in War­ring­ton. Through­out the vast ma­jor­ity of those years Dave worked in the NHS whilst pledg­ing his time on a vol­un­tary ba­sis. Only in 2015 did he take on a paid po­si­tion as CEO. One of his great­est achieve­ments is found­ing Dis­abil­ity Aware­ness Day; an event that has been repli­cated across more than 10 coun­tries and raised mil­lions of pounds. He has been awarded an MBE for his ser­vices to dis­abled peo­ple. ‘I want peo­ple to know there is still a life to be lived, that it’s about what you can do, not what you can’t that re­ally mat­ters,’ he says.

dis­abil­i­ty­part­ner­ship.org.uk

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