Ray Vernon, Digital Marketing Consultant and Founder of Mysokoni
From Canada to the UK, I still remember my amazement some 25 years ago as I watched my best friend send a message to a chat room and someone answered back. Here we were in Toronto, Canada and someone in Seattle, Washington was communicating in a matter of seconds. I needed to understand how it all worked so I read everything I could find on computers and the internet. That knowledge was a catalyst for a career change from working in audio-video retail stores across Canada to working for Cisco System in the UK and ultimately building an award-winning web design agency in Hampshire.
Today, I consult with clients from start-ups to large corporates. A couple years ago I was asked by Autism Hampshire for advice with their new website which for the first time, gave me an understanding of some of the challenges faced by charities. Then a few months later a friend of mine mentioned how frustrated she was trying to buy something to help her elderly mother, having visited many websites and seen a lot of products she was not sure what to do next.
A New Beginning, Thanks Naidex
While trying to help her, someone mentioned Naidex which was taking place the next month, so I attended with no idea what to expect. I was positively blown away by the variety of innovative products that were available and some exhibitors told me they attended Naidex because the general public is either unaware that their products exist or are not sure where to get them.
I read a lot of reports about the challenges people living with disabilities faced while shopping online. The Click-Away Pound Report 2016 by Rick Williams & Steve Brownlow really opened my eyes. I reached out to Rick and he was kind enough to share some thoughts. My wife and I talked about what we could do to help, considering my internet experience, and our limited savings, but ultimately felt compelled to do something.
Steep Learning Curve
We thought why not build a one-stop shop marketplace where all types of accessibility products can be found, compared and purchased. It was a steep learning curve trying to understand how to make a website W3C compliant and user-friendly at the same time. We learned a lot and have come a long way, but will continue to work and make things easier for people living with disabilities to buy accessibility products. We welcome feedback on how to make improvements.
Thanks to some guidance from Rhu Global and WID (World Institute on Disability), we creating Mysokoni. It's a marketplace where you will find only accessibility products. We are starting with a few vendors and will be adding more each month. We hope with the support of dedicated vendors and the buying public to make this the first place they want to visit when looking for accessibility products.
Public Enquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org (open to the public 21 April)
Vendor Enquiries: Currently accepting vendors please email for access: email@example.com
Ph: 0333 370 1607
Mysokoni will be on stand 8153 at Naidex.