Hats off to Lord Coe and Sir Philip Craven, London 2012 has been a sporting triumph but as an objective to make day to day life for disabled people that little bit easier, we've got a way to go. When the athletes leave the stadium and courts, and the applause has died down - it's up to all of us to pick up the baton and champion the rights of disabled people for every day inclusion.
As a sports fan first, and also a young wheelchair user, I hope the legacy of the Paralympics 2012 will raise awareness and respect for what disabled people can achieve - in the eyes of the non-disabled public, and disabled people ourselves.
The way I see it, the key to disabled people enjoying an independent life are the basics; access to education and employment. But I think the Paralympics have also highlighted the vital need to access the right equipment and training - and this where it becomes an important platform; considering society outside of sport too.
As a disabled person I want to be entirely independent and not reliant on friends or relatives to assist me all the time, and to an extent the Paralympics have shone a spotlight on the various and ingenious uses of mechanical assistance that can help disabled people do just that. Much as in the same way the wheelchair I received from Whizz-Kidz enables me to just get on with my life.
The Paralympic athletes are at the top of their game - attracting funding and support over the years - and have showed the world the personal grit and determination required once physical and attitudinal barriers are removed. But ordinary disabled people often can't even get off the starting blocks. Just maybe the Games we're all avidly watching will make people think about how to provide assistive equipment for kids, teenagers and young adults who may just need the right wheelchair.
In my mind the most powerful statement was made in the opening ceremony. The athletes' parade offered a stark reminder of how great the gulf is between the quality of equipment and wheelchairs from country to country. This isn't saying that the UK is perfect by any means. Whizz-Kidz estimate that 70,000 children and young people in the UK are still waiting for the right mobility equipment for them. I find that shocking. For each individual denied the correct wheelchair that's a person that cannot fulfill their potential.
If the Paralympics are presented in a balanced way they will prove to be a catalyst for change. By this I mean focusing on ability and achievement, rather than 'sad' backstories or the 'plight' of being a disabled person. This cannot just be a flash in the pan. All parties need to work together to move forward when the Games end; from disabled people and their families, to charities, the health service and government. I hope some of the athletes and sporting agencies will also use their profiles and 'the Paralympics effect' to make things a lot better for all disabled people.