Seniors in the Spotlight for 2014 Mobility Contest
The free vehicle giveaway is the high point of the mobility industry’s National Mobility Awareness Month project, with entire communities rallying around their local heroes in hopes of voting them to victory. In late February, the mobilityawarenessmonth.com Web site will start accepting contest submissions, with winners announced in May.
But there are changes to the contest for 2014, says Dave Hubbard, CEO/executive director of the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA).
“This year we have three categories: people with disabilities, caregivers — they can talk about people they care for — and seniors,” Hubbard says. “We want to make sure that seniors get an even play in this because we realize that while seniors these days are technically adept and know about Twitter and Facebook, they may not have the social networks that young people do. So we want to be sure that it’s fair and that they have an equal shot."
Making seniors aware of mobility equipment is a prime NMEDA goal, Hubbard says, since seniors often don’t get the sort of assistive technology education that’s provided by rehab hospitals or clinics that specialize in mobility-related conditions like spinal cord injury.
“If you’re aging into a disability, you probably have no idea what’s available to help you out there,” Hubbard points out. The industry supports the contest by donating vehicles, conversions, customized adaptive equipment and related installation services to the winners. Hubbard says Chrysler and Toyota have already committed to donating vehicles for the contest.
This article originally appeared in the February 2014 issue of Mobility Management.