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ukactive has today (23 August) announced former Cabinet Secretary Lord Gus O’Donnell, founder of The Valuable 500 Caroline Casey and Chair of the Royal College of General Practitioners Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard as speakers for the National Summit.

Lord Gus O’Donnell was Britain’s most senior civil servant under Prime Ministers Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and David Cameron, serving as Cabinet Secretary and Head of the British Civil Service from 2005 to 2011.

In May he co-authored a report as part of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Wellbeing Economics, recommending that Government policy should be targeted at the wellbeing of the people and not at economic growth.

Today, he chairs multiple economic advisory groups and boards – serving as Chairman of Frontier Economics, Chair of the Board of Trustees for Pro Bono Economics, and Chair of the Behavioural Insights Team Advisory Board at the Cabinet Office.

He is joined on the agenda by keynote speaker Caroline Casey, an acclaimed TED Talk speaker, award-winning social entrepreneur and founder of The Valuable 500, a catalyst for an inclusion revolution that exists to position disability equally on the global business leadership agenda.

And completing the first round of speakers to be announced is Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the UK’s largest Medical Royal College (representing over 52,000 family doctors across the UK) and a recognised health commentator in the media.

More than 700 influencers and policymakers are expected to gather for the event at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre on 31 October, to examine how physical activity is affected by where we live, how we live and where we work.

The theme for the National Summit will be ‘The Backbone of a Modern Britain’, positioning physical activity, and the sectors that deliver it, as critical to the future health, wellbeing and prosperity of the nation.

Lord O’Donnell will deliver a keynote speech outlining the vision to make wellbeing rather than economic growth the main way that we measure the Government’s success and what this could mean for the way we live, work and play.

Prof Stokes-Lampard will join an expert panel to address the role of activity and prevention in the NHS Long-Term Plan, which presents a clear opportunity for physical activity providers to reduce the burden on the NHS.

And Casey will give a keynote speech on the mission of The Valuable 500, which is committed to building a global movement on inclusive business for the 1.3 billion people in the world with a disability. The initiative aims to get 500 businesses to commit to put disability inclusion on their leadership agendas.

Launched at this year’s World Economic Forum Annual Summit, Casey succeeded in bringing disability inclusion onto the main stage at DAVOS for the first time, with the support of global business leaders including Sir Richard Branson and Paul Polman, and global brands including Virgin Media and Omnicom.

CEO of ukactive Huw Edwards said: “Today, the physical activity sector stands at the centre of some of the most important developments for this nation’s future.

“ukactive’s members and partners are united in leading on the most crucial issues facing the UK today, from improving inclusion to reducing youth crime, saving our high streets to transforming frontline health services.

“We are delighted to bring such a strong and diverse cast of speakers to National Summit, including the influential and incredible minds we announce today.

“Lord O’Donnell will chair one of the most important debates facing our sector today – the future role of physical activity in delivering the Government’s prevention strategy.

“Caroline Casey’s personal story and global initiative will offer an incredible opportunity for the sector to demonstrate its leadership by committing to improve disability inclusion.

“And Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard will bring her incredible experience and unrivalled vision to the conversation that seeks to transform our view of frontline  health services.

“National Summit 2019 provides a unique moment to build the partnerships and plans that will put our organisations and workforces at the heart of a modern Britain.”

Caroline Casey said: “I am thrilled to be speaking at the ukactive National Summit and the chance this presents in highlighting the huge opportunities disability inclusion in the physical activity sector holds for businesses, the disabled community and society as whole.

“As one of the 1.3 billion people in the world living with a disability, I know the importance of exercise for my physical and mental health. But I am keenly aware that though I am fortunate enough to be able to access the leisure and fitness services I choose, too many others are being left unserved.

“And in this day of hyper competition is seems crazy that any business leader in this sector overlooks this relatively untapped consumer base. People with disabilities and their families represent a global $8 trillion market.

“When business wakes up to the value of this opportunity, not only will the needless barriers disabled people face in accessing the services they need for improved health be removed, but the business bottom line benefits.

“We deeply appreciate ukactive’s leadership and support and look forward to seeing who will take the industry lead.”

Click here to find out more about National Summit and secure your ticket.


About The Valuable 500

Launched by Binc, The Valuable 500 is a campaign working to ensure businesses globally recognise the value of the one billion people around the world living with a disability. We believe that building a global society that recognises the value of the 1 billion people living with a disability starts with business. We’re on a mission to make sure businesses across the world recognise the value of the one billion people living with a disability.

Binc was founded by social entrepreneur and activist Caroline Casey in 2015, with a mission to ignite a historic global movement for a new age of business inclusion. Binc is capitalising on Caroline Casey’s 18-year track record of success engaging over 450 organisations and working with 500,000 business leaders. Binc fundamentally believes that inclusive business creates inclusive societies and is initiating a new approach to business that genuinely includes the 1 billion people living in the world with a disability. Binc is the founding team behind valuable, an ambitious global campaign to put inclusivity on top of the business agenda around the world in 2019. Binc is using a tried and tested formula that has worked in the past for gender, race and LGBT to leverage the exponential rise of The Diversity and Inclusion Agenda.