In 2010, staff from the Joni and Friends’ Christian Institute on Disability and Field Services gathered to explore their dream of a future international conference that would bring together leaders, ministers, educators and practitioners from around the world, with the goal of “accelerating disability ministry to the ends of the earth” more effectively.
The Lord blessed the staff with a single-mindedness of purpose that was Christ-centered, Church-focused, and Community-minded. In the years to come, He faithfully provided funding, a venue, speakers, participants, and servants to enable Global Access Conference 2015 to become a reality.
The Global Access Conference brought together over 1,000 people, with over 40 countries and 6 continents represented. Attendees were educated, trained and edified over a 4-day period through keynote speakers, worship, interviews, prayer, workshops, networking, and panel discussions. Disability-related themes included culture, religion, bioethics, technology, theology, practical ministry, counseling, society, law, and leadership.
“I have spent much of my career attending and presenting at conferences (ad infinitum), but I can honestly say that Global Access was the best, most well organized and well planned conference that I have been to… hands down… God’s presence and blessing on that time was indeed tangible from morning to evening.” – Ray Norman
The GA Conference 2015 became an unprecedented opportunity to share experiences, forge strong working relationships, and learn how to practically and effectively promote global disability ministry in the Church and community at large.