Even after more than a decade of living with a spinal cord injury (SCI), artist and designer with a disability Mike Monize still struggled to make peace with his condition. It was a physical and mental struggle. He was almost ready to give up!
All the challenges he faced on a daily basis brought with them uncertainty, anxiety, fear and anger…
But then Mike embarked on a pop-up tour through the US called “Never Give Up” to promote his art, poetry and music. While on tour he realised almost immediately how difficult travel was for people with disabilities.
“At almost every stop we had some challenge or obstacle to get over with regard to our accommodation. We found that no matter what plans we made, or how hard we tried, there was always some difficulty,” he explains.
“From standard non-compliance or businesses doing the bare minimum, the overall experience of our stay, with a few exceptions, was for us a lot of work.”
The challenges faced on tour ultimately sparked the creation of AXS World. The blog site acts as a global accessibility platform, documenting Mike’s travels and the accessibility of venues on his tour.
In a blog post, Mike notes: “Much like the disenchantment I feel thinking back to my Star Trek expectations of the future, disability health care, scientific advancement, and the overall social narrative, even awareness on living with a disability and accessibility hasn’t shaped out quite like I thought it would have. Instead we have quite a bit of work to do, folks!”
The blog aims to improve the quality of life for people with disabilities by raising awareness and shedding light on the world of disability.
If you would like to read more of Mike’s travels, check out the website at www.axs.world.