Charlotte de Vilmorin from Paris spent most of her life in a wheelchair, struggling to find accessibility in every nook and corner she visited. It was during such a trip to Florida that she realised it was almost impossible for people with disabilities to use public transport. This was a testament to the fact that even in the developed nations, accessibility of public transport and other amenities is not up to the mark for people with disabilities. “It’s very difficult to get around when you are in a wheelchair, because public transportation is not accessible,” explained Charlotte to Mashable. “You can’t just grab a cab or rent a regular car.”
It was at this point of saturation and angst that the idea of ‘Wheeliz’ came to being. This is like an Uber for the disabled wherein the start-up connects people with disabilities with owners of wheelchair adapted cars. There are more than 1 lakh cars available and it claims to help owners which such cars to earn some extra bucks. In this way everyone’s a winner. The platform currently has thousands of registered users across Paris. This facility has even helped Paris gain a suitable standing amongst the most tourist friendly destinations across the globe.
Numerous researches, observations and anecdotes have proved that when a society is more inclusive, it creates the wellbeing of the entire society by being more compassionate. Imagine if a service like this is available for every man, woman and child across the world. It would not only be amazing for those who have faced an obstacle at every point in their lives due to their disabilities, but will also create livelihood for owners of cars with disabled friendly facilities. Indeed a win-win situation for everyone.
Alekhya Gampa | TOC
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