Last week, on June 2, the Austrian city of Graz put on its second Accessibility Day. A wide variety of organizations and institutions took part with the goal of raising awareness for the physical and mental barriers that hinder people with disabilities from fully taking part in the life of their communities. The motto of the day was “Experience” and as the motto suggests, there was a lot to do for the the event’s visitors: A wheelchair circuit, wheelchair dancing, sledge hockey and a tour to learn about accessible architecture and one especially suitable for deaf and blind people were all part of the program. Continue reading Accessibility Day in Graz
When the MyAccessible.EU consortium met in Vienna on April 21 und 22 for one of our regular get-togethers, we spent half a day on the streets of the city. Equipped with the latest versions of our accessibility mapping tools, we stretched our legs and explored one part of central Vienna. The necessary preparations included downloading the mapping apps, allocating tasks among the attendees, and checking how well the area is covered on OpenStreetMap (OSM). For this last task we used Heidelberg University’s OSMatrix tool. Then, we split up into three groups and started roaming the streets. Continue reading Accessibility Tools in Vienna
Around the world more and more people with disabilities are traveling and the tourism industry is beginning to take note. However, finding relevant information for planning and carrying out a trip can still be very challenging for people with access issues. To help alleviate this problem the giant amongst the travel guides, Lonely Planet, has published a brand new guide with online resources on accessibility from around the world. The guide contains a wide variety of travel information for people who are hard of hearing or vision impaired, in a wheelchair or who are slow walkers. Especially good news is that the guide is free and downloadable as a PDF! Continue reading Accessible Travel Information
The worldwide campaign “MapMyDay” brought many individuals and groups out to map the accessibility of places in their cities and towns. As part of the campaign MyAccessible.EU partner Mapping for Change joined forces with Health and Social Care students from London South Bank University to discover accessibility in London’s district Waterloo. Continue reading MapMyDay in London
In October a mapping project was started by the Centre for Social Innovation with students at the Ungargasse School Center in Vienna. About 40 students aged between 14 and 19 went out in small groups to check the wheelchair accessibility of their surroundings and to record their findings on Wheelmap.org. Continue reading Local School Maps Vienna with Wheelmap
This year’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities was commemorated around the world in a novel manner. The global #MapMyDay campaign, which was launched on December 3, mobilised thousands of people, with and without disabilities, to further the cause for accessibility around the world. The mission of #MapMyDay was twofold: one aim was to gather as much information as possible on the wheelchair accessibility of public places and the other was to raise awareness among the general public about the barriers that people with mobility impairments face in our communities. Continue reading #MapMyDay: mapping accessibility around the world
At our recent workshop in Madrid we met up with Michiel Desmet and Karl Thiry from the On Wheels initiative in Belgium. On Wheels is an online application focused on the accessibility of public places such as shops, pharmacies, bathrooms, restaurants, cafés, parking facilities, hotels and banks. In April 2015 the OnWheels app was launched to make data entry and retrieval more convenient. It is available for download from the Apple Appstore and the Android Playstore.
Continue reading MyAccessible.EU meets On Wheels
In mid-September 2015 we took some time off from developing and piloting our tools and headed to Madrid, where we met the members of the project’s Advisory Board of Experts to discuss crowdsourcing and online mapping for accessibility. The occasion was the 5th International Congress on Tourism for All in Madrid, a major European event for discussing the future of accessible tourism and related technological innovations. The major force behind the conference is Spain’s ONCE, one of the largest foundations for people with disability in Europe.
Last week our partner in Vienna, ZSI started a mapping project with a local school. Students will go out in groups and explore their surroundings by mapping accessible places using two mobile applications, taking photographs and playing the role of inquisitive journalists. But, let’s start from the beginning:
The Educational Centre HTL HAK Ungargasse in Vienna is quite a unique school in Austria for several reasons. The school offers eight different types of schooling and professional training for students with and without disabilities. In addition, a residential facility is attached to the school. Teachers and staff are enthusiastic about the mapping project in which one group of the residential home and two classes are taking part. Two information sessions were held last week to introduce the mapping project and the tasks and apps involved. Also a ‘mapping folder’ was given to each student including an information sheet concerning the flow of the mapping project, a step-by-step guide for the two applications and of course the MyAccessible.EU, Wheelmap and berollbar.at flyers.
September in the UK: temperatures are plummeting, umbrella sales are soaring, and everyone’s beginning to feel like hibernating. What better time to contemplate walking in our beautiful natural landscapes?! The National Trails stretch across 2,500 miles of England and Wales, and they’re waiting to be experienced by everyone throughout all the seasons. However, a lack of information about accessibility on the National Trails means that many people with limited mobility are unable to get out and enjoy them. Mapping for Change are working with the National Trails and Walk Unlimited to promote walking for people with limited mobility, by collecting information about accessibility along the trails. Continue reading National Trails: mapping their accessibility