National Paralympic Day

This Saturday 30th August, the UK is celebrating Paralympic sport.

Events are taking place across the country, to mark two years since London 2012.. and YOU can get involved!

Our sports wheelchairs will be at two of the biggest festivals – in London and Liverpool – to help give people their first taste of sport. Always fancied giving it a go? Well now’s your chance!

In London, the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will come alive once again. Paralympic athletes will compete in some of the park’s iconic venues, and Motivation’s Multisport wheelchairs will be on hand for aspiring sports stars to get in, and have a go!

So if you’ve always fancied shooting a hoop, serving an ace or just seeing how fast you can spin around the court, then we look forward to seeing you there! More information about the London event can be found here.

And if you’ve always wanted to see how fast you could race 100m, our Flying Start racing wheelchair will be rigged up and ready to go at the Liverpool ONE shopping centre. Attached to rollers, and linked up to a computer, you’ll be able to track your speed against other competitors on the day. It sounds like great fun!

If you manage to get along to either event, please let us know.

For other opportunities to try wheelchair sport, take a look at the Parasport club-finder, to find a sports club near you!

Right Wheelchair, Right Way

Receiving our award from the Secretary of StateExciting news this week at Motivation! We’ll let our president and co-founder David Constantine tell you more…

We were delighted to scoop top prize at the BOND International Development Awards for our partnership with the World Health Organization. The picture shows me receiving the award from Secretary of State Justine Greening. You can watch our award-winning film here

As a small organisation, teaming up with the WHO means we can make a difference on a global scale – by not only giving people the Right Wheelchair, in the Right Way but training others to do the same. This has the power to change thousands of lives.

For a disabled person living in one of the world’s poorest countries, the Right Wheelchair is not just a set of wheels, it’s a vehicle to reach a better future. It creates a route out of poverty. The right wheelchair gets children to school, adults to work and families out into the community. It’s much more than just a wheelchair – it’s a passport to a better life.

It’s particularly poignant to be sharing this news, and the film, with you today – on Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Day.

As many of you will know, I broke my neck in a diving accident when I was 21 and have used a wheelchair ever since. But I am one of the lucky ones…

If I had been born in the developing world, things might have been very different. There’s a high chance I wouldn’t have survived more than 18 months – probably due to secondary complications like urinary tract infections or pressure sores.

So please watch the film, and support us if you can. With your help, we can transform many more lives – Right Wheelchair, Right Way. Thank you.

“No one left behind” Government response to Disability and Development Report

Last Spring, an International Development Select Committee (IDC) Report on Disability and Development made a number of recommendations to ensure that people with disabilities are systematically and consistently included in Government policy and programming. Motivation, as one of the leading charities supporting people with disabilities in the developing world, provided evidence to the report.

The Government has now published its response. You can read it in full here

David Constantine, MBE, President and co-founder of Motivation said: “We are extremely pleased to see that the Government has taken on virtually all of the recommendations in the Report. Whilst we are obviously disappointed that the Government does not agree with the need for a disability strategy, we are very pleased to see that a disability framework, setting out the Government’s commitment, approach and actions will be published by the Autumn. With 70 million people in need of a wheelchair living in poverty, the framework will offer a much needed clearer focus and direction to ensure that “No one is left behind”. Along with our work on guidelines and training for the sector to ensure that more people receive an appropriate wheelchair and support, we will continue to share our expertise to support the UK government in the future.”

Adapted Vehicle Hire To The Rescue!

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One of our customers got more than they bargained for on a recent day out. After misjudging the car park exit, their wheelchair accessible vehicle got stuck – leaving them without a car and with a slightly bruised ego!

When you are out and about, enjoying your day, you don’t automatically think about the height of your vehicle and whether it will fit under that little bridge and through the small gap. The trouble is, if you don’t know the answer, you are running the risk of your day trip coming to a standstill!

Fortunately, Adapted Vehicle Hire was able to help by quickly getting them back on the road again!

We have one of the UK’s largest fleets of adapted cars and wheelchair accessible vehicles for hire – with car makes and models to suit every taste and budget. In next to no time, our stranded customer was able to continue their journey, after our reliable team delivered a suitable replacement vehicle.

We have three and five door vehicles which can comfortably seat up to five passengers and wheelchair accessible vehicles which are ideal for up to nine people. Our reliable adapted self-drive cars for disabled people and wheelchair accessible vehicles for disabled passengers help disabled people across the country to get out and about for day trips, short breaks and holidays and enjoy the great outdoors.

Each one of our cars have ready-fit adaptations that can also be customised by our experienced and highly skilled engineers, depending on each customer’s individual requirements.

Our standard adaptations include:

Push Pull hand controlsLeft foot acceleratorSteering wheel aid/ballInfra-red steering ballIndicator crossover barEasy release handbrakeIndicator toggle

Adapted Vehicle Hire can deliver and collect vehicles from wherever you are in the country. We also offer a convenient meet-and-greet service from airports and railway stations – so you can have a vehicle ready and waiting for you when you arrive.

Let your adventures begin by speaking to our friendly and experienced team today.

Employment and the disabled – Adapted Vehicle Hire here to help!

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It is no new thing to hear governments talk about creating more employment opportunities for the disabled to access. Yet despite each successive government talking about this ‘opportunity’ and devising policies and strategies, to date half of the UK’s disabled population is still without some form of paid employment.

Chief Executive of Disability Rights UK, Liz Sayce believes that disabled people are 23% less likely to be in employment when compared to non disabled people with the same qualifications. And of those disabled people who are in employment, the types of roles they undertake tend to be the ones which are being cut back or reduced in size. Liz Sayce believes that change is possible and that it could be achieved if employers simply extended the principle surrounding ‘employer ownership skills’ and added a principle specific to the employment and development of disabled employees. If employers were to take ownership of the problem and create solutions then Liz Sayce believes we could see a change in the number of disabled people with access to employment.

In gaining employment it is also essential for many disabled people that they choose an employer who is recognised for their diversity and promotion of disability practises. When seeking employment, many disabled people want to know who the best employers are, who will make reasonable adjustments, who will recognise their talents and who will make reasonable adjustments and act with transparency whilst promoting their practises.

If you are in employment or looking for employment then one of the main factors you will need to take into consideration is the commute to and from work and this is where AVH can assist you.

Our extensive range of adapted cars for hire can be fully modified in our own workshop by qualified engineers in order to allow you to enjoy a hassle free commute to work and ready to face the day ahead. No more waiting in queues for buses or trains that are then overcrowded, late or to find the wheelchair / disabled space already occupied. At Adapted Vehicle Hire we are able to supply adapted car hire for the disabled on a variety of terms; daily, short, medium and long term. All of our vehicles can be adapted to provide you with a bespoke car which suits your exact requirements. Ranging from small family cars through to WAV minibuses to fully automated vehicles which allow the user to transfer from wheelchair to driving position with ease.

Our adaptations include:

Why Pick a Disabled Car?

For anybody who is a wheelchair user or else you have a friend who might be, you might have probably run into complications when it comes to mobility. The fact is that it’s not necessarily effortless to get around when you happen to be in a wheelchair. Luckily, it’s now much simpler than previously. Councils are placing wheelchair ramps around towns and cities, and making public transport as accessible as possible. Nonetheless there are times when it’s possible you’ll simply want to head out driving making your own choices regarding where you go – without worrying about the limits experienced by trains and buses. In this case, investing in a disabled car – generally known as a WAV (wheelchair accessible vehicle) could be a good plan. Picking a WAV generally is one of probably the most liberating investment decisions you ever make.

Exactly why select a WAV instead of a standard car?

So what can a disabled car give which a regular road car cannot? Well, the principal advantage is that a WAV will include a whole host of additional items that make it suitable for use by wheelchair users. Examples of these features include four-point wheelchair securing systems, ramps to get in and out, and extra headroom and space to accommodate the wheelchair. A disabled car such as this will mean that no matter who is driving can be assured that the wheelchair won’t move through the trip, and will be secured in as safely as a regular occupant should be in a car. All WAVs are usually equipped with airbags and other safety features that are exclusively produced for disabled cars.

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It is not all about ease-of-access

Selecting a disabled car doesn’t necessarily mean you will need to compromise on appearances or power; far from it. In reality, wheelchair accessible vehicles can be purchased in a comparable range to most regular cars – giving speed as it’s needed and also fuel efficiency. Plus, a number of the world’s leading brands deliver wheelchair accessible vehicles, including Citroen and Peugeot. The cars are designed to be as enjoyable to travel in as is possible, with sizeable windows on the sides to fill the space with sun light – and enable a good view of the surroundings no matter whether you’re a driver or a passenger. You can even find some businesses that retrofit existing vehicles to be wheelchair accessible, despite the fact that these conversions frequently carry a higher price tag. And in case you’re concerned about cost, keep in mind that it’s possible to get a low priced disabled car by way of initiatives including the government’s Motability Scheme.

Try before you purchase

So are you sure that a wheelchair accessible vehicle is the right decision in your case yet? If not, you may always take one of the WAVs in the range out for a spin. Whether you’re driving yourself or you’ll have an acquaintance or family member behind the wheel, test driving a disabled car can be a brilliant method to get a feel for the vehicle – and whether it will make your life less complicated. With a little luck, it’ll do just that.

Tom Fredrikson writes many articles on a variety of topics. If you would like to find out more about a disability car or the Motability scheme please feel free to visit Constable Mobility`s website.

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Free Mobility Chair – Are You Suffering With a Mobility Disability Unnecessarily?

You have probably seen the advertisements for a free mobility chair. Are you someone whose life has been changed due to your lack of being able to get around? Do you have to ask for help to do something as simple as going to the bathroom? Do you suffer in silence because you don’t want to bother someone to help you?

If it makes you feel any better, you aren’t alone. Millions of people suffer the same disability. Recent changes in Medicare and the addition of Obama-care has made it so much easier to get the mobility chair you want and need. There is often no cost to you for this.

Whether they like it or not, your insurance company is obligated to give you a disability scooter if you can prove you need one. The catch phrase is need. You may think you would like one, but if you can’t prove you need it, they do not have to give you one. The trick is to get your doctor to recommend it. But even that may not be enough.

The amount of paperwork insurance agencies require is mind boggling. Do you know which forms to submit? Do you understand the questions they are asking? If you don’t, the chances of you actually getting an electric wheelchair are highly diminished. The best idea is to get help from someone who already knows what the insurer is looking for.

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Here’s a huge tip. Many wheelchair companies have a claims department that will process the paperwork for you at no charge. Why would they do this? It’s simple. They make a profit every time they sell a disability scooter. It doesn’t matter who pays for it. In fact, many prefer the insurance company over a direct sale to a patient because insurance companies don’t haggle over the price. The distributor can expect to make his full profit for the power chair.

There are many well-known companies who provide this service. All you have to do is fill out a couple of forms over the Internet and you your new mobility chair will be delivered in a few weeks. You may not even need to leave your home.

For free information about getting your free mobility chair [], click the link. There is no obligation or cost to you.

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Top Tips For Driving If You Suffer With a Disability

Having a medical condition or a disability does not necessarily mean that you can’t or won’t be able to drive. If you suffer with a mobility problem and you find that getting out and about is becoming a real struggle then you need to look at what your options are.

There are many people whose quality of life has improved greatly since applying for a driving licence and buying disabled vehicles or having their current vehicle adapted; it can greatly improve levels of independence and confidence. If you are confused about how to go about getting a vehicle or what the rules and benefits are for disabled drivers then check out the guide below…

- If you already hold a current driving licence and have a ‘notifiable’ medical condition or disability then you must tell the DVLA right away. You should also tell the DVLA if your medical condition or disability has become worse since your licence was issued or if you develop a new medical condition or disability.

- If you don’t hold a licence yet and want to have driving lessons then you need to apply for a provisional licence. You will have to undergo an assessment to see whether you will actually be able to drive and what sort of controls and equipment you would need. If you are eligible then you can get lessons from a specially trained instructor in a suitably adapted car. There are a number of organisations that you can contact to help with this.

- Once you have a licence, if you are looking to buy a car then you should do your research as you may be able to get a discount. Contact car dealers and ask if they operate any disabled drivers discount schemes. Some companies can offer discounts on new or secondhand cars to anyone receiving the higher rate mobility component of disability living allowance.

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- Disabled vehicles or any vehicle which is used only for a disabled person (whether they are the driver or the passenger) will be exempt from road tax. To make sure that you get this benefit you need to ensure that the vehicle must be registered in the name of the disabled person or in the name of someone authorised to act on your behalf.

- The blue badge scheme allows certain groups of disabled people to park in parking restricted areas. For example the badge enables disabled people to park free of charge and without limit at on-street parking meters in some areas, you need to double check whether the scheme operates in your area though before parking.

- You could be eligible for a blue badge if you are a driver or passenger who receives the higher rate mobility component of disability living allowance, if you have a permanent and substantial disability which means you are unable to walk or can walk a little but only with considerable difficulty or if you as the driver suffer from severe upper limb disabilities.

If you feel that you could benefit from getting out and about more then you should consider the tips above so that you can enjoy more independence and variety in your life.

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Walking Aids For the Disabled

For some of us walking is a pleasure which we take for granted, whether it be a simple trip to the local store to pick up the groceries, a walk in the countryside to enjoy fresh air and or just getting from the living room to the kitchen. It is only when we have difficulty walking, or can no longer walk, that we realise how essential our mobility is to our every day life.

Fortunately, there are many different aids to walking available on the market now, ranging from traditional walking sticks for minimal support, to modern ergonomically designed walkers such as the award winning Topro range from Denmark.

Walking sticks can be of wood or metal manufacture. There are also folding adjustable sticks with “T” shaped handles, which are lightweight and easy to use, and fold to fit in handbag or basket.

Meanwhile, for arthritis sufferers, there are special grip canes, also usually adjustable, while for those with balance problems there is an adjustable quad cane with a curved neck which places the user’s weight directly over the shaft for safety. The shaped handle fits the palm, tapering for comfort of the fingers.

Also handy for days out is the walking stick seat, which folds flat and clips together forming a stick, and can then be opened out into a useful little seat.

If more assistance is need, folding and rigid walker frames are handy – these can be fitted with wheels or not as required. The HiRiser Folding Frame is shaped to help the user rise, and can be used as a toilet aid also.

Tri Walkers are usually for indoor use for get easily around the home, and can be made or steel or aluminium, folding easily to put into a car or for storage.

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For great stability, although more for outdoor use, the Rollators are prescribed! These come in many guises, usually with an integral seat and a shopping basket. The latest is the Lets Go indoor rollator, which has a tray. This is an entirely new and practical aid and is light flexible and quite attractive to have around the home. The Lets Go comes with a carry bag and a clip on tray for transporting drinks and other small items around the home. It can also be folded away. This walking aid, however, does not have a seat, as it is designed for indoor use.

The Deluxe Rollator, from Promedics, is of lightweight aluminium construction, and has a back rest as well as a seat. This walking aids has the added advantage that it folds into a very small area.

All walkers and rollators have a range of accessories – shopping baskets, crutch and stick holders and bags are available as required.

And finally there are the wheelchairs, of which an enormous selection is available. In particular, there are too lightweight varieties. Transit chairs are the ones with the little wheels, and with removable arms to allow easy user transfer. These are nearly always folding and come in various weights and sizes.

A transport chair is a very portable lightweight folding chair, allowing maneuver from one location to another in limited space. It has front castors and fixed rear wheels and the armrests swivel for side transfer.

With all the walking aids available nowadays, many disabled people suffering from decreased mobility can soon be up and about again – and off down the shops to pick up those groceries!

Jean Rasbridge is the owner of The Disabled Shop, which supplies a large range of disabled aids to the UK, including an extensive range of walking aids.

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Movement For Mobility And Pain Control

Disability and pain frequently hold hands. Those of us who are disabled are less able to move our bodies and become increasingly sedentary. This creates the vicious cycle of decreasing endorphin release from lack of exercise which increases pain which further lessens mobility, and on it goes.

The only way to stop the cycle and get pain under control is to find a way to move our bodies in space. This can be done safely, especially under the guidance of a skilled physical therapist, yoga therapist or tai chi instructor. Water exercise especially can be an excellent way for people with mobility issues to exercise against resistance safely.

I have M.S. and my mobility has varied from non-ambulatory to walking independently most of the time. I have found ways to get vigorous exercise at each stage. When I needed a scooter or walker I took advantage of the M.S. Society’s Aqua Therapy Program. I also have had therapists and teachers who were able to modify instruction in tai chi and yoga to my situation. When ambulatory, I use walking both for the exercise and the balance and gait training it provides.

The more you walk, the better you walk. The more you move, typically, the better you will feel. This is because exercise causes the release of the body’s natural pain killers. There is nothing as potent in fighting chronic pain. And you do not have to be able to run a marathon to benefit from these chemicals that your own body can produce. Gentle, safe floor or pool exercise can accomplish enough endorphin release to work.

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It is frightening when first trying any new movement in the face of serious chronic pain because it is hard to try to distinguish the discomfort of reactivating stiff unused muscles, tendons, and ligaments from other pain. Technique, and how long or how much exercise to do are critical especially when beginning a new activity. This is where the guidance of skilled trainers is key.

Consult your treating physicians for therapists and instructors in your area that have an interest in working with people who have mobility issues and chronic pain. They are there. Rehabilitation facilities are accustomed to finding creative ways to meet the needs of their clients and so these are good places to seek help. Whatever it takes, get moving! Exercise has a place in everyone’s day. For those of us with disability, it is vital for preventing increasing debility and conquering pain.

By author Dr. Eileen Schweickert.

For more information on pain control and living with Multiple Sclerosis please check out our web site. []

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Putting Mobility First