Recently in Inclusive Destination Development Category

Irish Wheelchair Access Guidelines

IWA members have identified access to the built environment as one of the biggest issues facing them in their daily lives. It is also widely acknowledged that access issues have a direct impact on other priorities such as employment, housing, parking and transport. People with disabilities want to lead fully independent lives, and rightfully expect to be able to participate in all aspects of society.

In response to this issue, Irish Wheelchair Association have a dedicated National Steering Group on Access who work with others such as the NDA Centre for Excellence in Universal Design, the Department of the Environment and local authorities to improve knowledge and awareness of the importance of this issue.


More information at:

Accessible Wilderness Society

The Accessible Wilderness Society seeks to develop its 25 acre Roberts Lake wilderness property. Designed from the ground up using the principles of Universal Design, this will become BC's first universally accessible campground and wilderness lodge, able to accommodate those with physical, visual, auditory, or cognitive challenges along with their family and friends. This 'inclusive by design' approach will become a showcase of accessibility, sustainability, and a place to celebrate the natural beauty of our rugged west coast wilderness.


Clips from a presentation on Inclusion tourism with news commentary in Nepali.


 

Rogélia Heriberta.jpg
In 2011 my friend, Brazilian psychologist Marta Alencar, visited Nepal.She has a project that introduces people to mobility impairments in a unique way. She created an imaginary character named Tina Descolada who is a doll in a wheelchair. (http://www.tinadescolada.blogspot.com.br/) Marta created a heartfelt slideshow for me to include in some of my presentations next week. You will find it here: 
 http://www.slideshare.net/srains/imagining-a-wheelchairaccessible-nepal-with-tina-descolada

See the story behind the disability rights action in Lisbon Portugal that has gone viral from  Lisboa (In)Acessível.


Staged in the Duke of Saldanha Plaza in Lisbon this bold action went on to become a meme gone viral. Parabens Portugal!
 

Using Brazil's first national study on domestic tourism by travelers with disabilities this address looks at some preliminary points to making the PETAR region truly aFAC.verso.Eldorado.jpg destination for all. It was my privilege to be invited to present at a conference on disability, development, and citizenship in Brazil. The conference site, Eldourado in the interior of São Paulo state sits in the Upper Ribeira River Ecological Park (PETAR) which is a world patrimony site.


The geology is formed by the collision of massive tectonic plates making the surface highly fractured. Called karst he area is riddled with caves. In fact, it contains South America's largest network of caves. One objective of the conference is to develop accessibility for the caves as tourist destinations.

Yet the region is also culturally unique. It is one o the poorest and least developed regions of Brazil. Its also home to maroons or quilimbos - communities historically formed by former slaves of African descent. 

This is a region that can truly benefit from the innovative approach to social and economic development that is Inclusive Tourism and Inclusive Development.
 

Here is the text of the uncaptioned video above:

 

This presentation also exists in Portuguese and Spanish translation.

Turismo Inclusivo para Eldourado y la PETAR: Primeros Pasos



http://www.slideshare.net/srains/petar-spanish


In the spirit of Olympic and Paralympic legacy, VisitEngland today launches a national marketing campaign aimed at championing and improving accessible tourism in England, a sector worth over £2billion a year* to the domestic tourism industry, with strong growth potential. The national tourist board has worked with a number of destinations and the Disabled Persons Railcard to develop exciting guides highlighting fantastic and accessible tourism experiences across the country. The Access for All Campaign aims to position England as a leading destination for accessible tourism.

The campaign, funded by £100,000 from the Government's Regional Growth Fund (RGF) plus contributions from partners, is a cost-effective way for selected English destinations to showcase their accessible tourism businesses and attract more visits from disabled travellers and others with access needs, and their companions.

Each destination has selected top class accommodation and attractions which have then been through an Access for All programme developed by VisitEngland to ensure they're delivering the highest standard of access for visitors. These places to stay and visit are featured in a series of local guides that highlight key attributes of the destination as well as promoting it as access friendly. The four destinations involved in the campaign are listed below, with a few highlights of what is on offer:

• Leicestershire - Situated in the heart of the country, Leicestershire has been welcoming visitors for more than 2,000 years - everyone from Roman armies to medieval Kings and Queens. Visitors to the city and county can explore its unique heritage in a new accessible package, Stay Play Explore Glorious Heritage. Visit the Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre, site of the dramatic conclusion to the Wars of the Roses, where Richard III lost his life and Henry Tudor was crowned king. From here, visit the Richard III exhibition at Leicester's Guildhall to continue your discovery of this intriguing monarch, before taking afternoon tea at The Belmont Hotel. The National Brewery Centre makes a perfect pit stop, and celebrates the history, art and fun of brewing.  Finally, see the National Memorial Arboretum and Snibston Discovery Museum, the largest science and technology museum in the East Midlands. The Stay Play Explore Glorious Heritage package includes entry to a choice of three out of five attractions and an overnight stay at the 4-star Hinckley Island Hotel for just £109. Each site has completed VisitEngland's Access for All programme and offers excellent facilities and access.

• NewcastleGateshead - A must-see for visitors to NewcastleGateshead is the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, with its four accessible gallery spaces, it has an ever-changing programme of exhibitions. NewcastleGateshead is home to Europe's largest shopping and leisure centre, intu Metrocentre which offers a range of services for visitors with accessibility needs, including Shopmobility, assisted changing facilities, and free wheelchair hire. The city is also home to one of the world's premier music venues, Sage Gateshead. This 'Access for All' award-winning venue's extensive access facilities include level access throughout, hearing loop systems, 35 accessible toilets and monitored light levels in all areas.  At the end of a long day, head back to the Hilton Newcastle Gateshead, an award-winning hotel set on the historic Quayside with fantastic views over the River Tyne. There are twelve accessible guest rooms, including three Executive rooms which have access to a private lounge and panoramic views of the city.

• Brighton - Bustling seaside destination Brighton & Hove has a jam-packed cultural calendar, making it a top spot for a seaside break. Take in Brighton's art culture with visits to the Brighton Museum and Art Gallery and the Hove Museum & Art Gallery. Heritage fans can visit Brighton's spectacular seaside palace, the Royal Pavilion, with easy access throughout the ground floor, or visit the nearby Preston Manor, a delightful Edwardian country house with the ground floor, basement and walled garden accessible for all visitors. Thistle Brighton, Jurys Inn and Hilton Brighton Metropole have all been through VisitEngland's Access for All programme and feature guest rooms accessible for wheelchair users and visually or hearing impaired guests.  VisitBrighton offers downloadable factsheets about access in the city and a map showing step free access to the main hotels and attractions, and the locations of dropped kerbs around the city.

• Bath - For centuries, Bath has enchanted everyone from ancient Romans to Jane Austen and it continues to offer everything required for a perfect weekend break: from heritage sites and contemporary culture to top hotels and excellent food. You can take in the atmosphere and impressive architecture on a fully personalised tour with Bath Parade Guides. Renovations to The Roman Baths - one of the wonders of Roman England - have made the Baths accessible for all, and include a lift to the lower level museum, level access, and ramps across ancient Roman obstacles. The Bath for Everyone offer for £74.50 will transport you to the city's origins and ensure you get to know the best of Bath. Take in Bath's culture and visit the Fashion Museum, housed in the impressive 18th century Assembly Rooms. All floors are accessible and equipped with ramps, a lift and level access throughout. Victoria Art Gallery is home to a plethora of international artists from the 15th century to the present day. Make a weekend of it with a stay at the Holiday Inn Express, where seven purpose-built accessible guest rooms have been designed to suit a variety of access needs.

James Berresford, chief executive of VisitEngland said: "England is a very accessible destination with plenty on offer for everyone. This is a wonderful opportunity to showcase these particular locations as shining examples of best practice; to build on the legacy of the 2012 Paralympic Games and encourage tourism businesses to make the most of the accessible tourism market, which has enormous potential for growth. Whether exploring the wonders of Roman England in Bath, enjoying a vibrant seaside break in Brighton, journeying through Leicestershire's heritage, or taking in the bustle of NewcastleGateshead, with these guides you can enjoy a fantastic holiday and feel confident that the places you visit are working hard to meet your access needs."

Download the guides from the 4th March in either PDF, large print Word or audio format from  VisitEngland.com/accessforall.  A limited number of printed copies are available for those who cannot access the guides online. Email qad@VisitEngland.org or call 0207 578 1454.


Source: http://www.whatson-greentourism.co.uk/visitengland-launches-national-marketing-campaign-to-promote-accessible-tourism/

Traveling in Barbados

From The Barbados Advocate:


The Barbados Council for the Disabled (BCD) and its initiative, the Fully Accessible Barbados (FAB) programme, are affording persons with disabilities who are visiting the island an opportunity to experience Barbados beyond the decks of their cruise liners.

Hence other organisations, places of interests and businesses are being encouraged to become accessible.

Co-ordinator and Founder of the Boca Area Post Polio Group, Maureen Sinkule, said that Barbados' having the FAB programme is "fabulous".

She said, "So many times people think that people with disabilities don't have money to spend, not that I do, but I'm just saying, if you can get us there, we can spend the money, but if we can't get there, we can't spend money. So this is fabulous. This is fabulous that you have such a vehicle and such wonderful people to work with."

And her refrain was chanted by other local and visiting persons with disabilities interviewed on Wednesday in the Bridgetown Port, "The disabled have money to spend too," and they want opportunities to spend it.

Full story:
http://www.barbadosadvocate.com/newsitem.asp?more=local&NewsID=34696


 The Destinations for All Summit will be an watershed event for diffusing our message to the industry. I am honored to be part of the organizing committee and overwhelmed at the quality and breadth of members of that committee.

Destinations for all website snipAre you working to make your tourism business or destination accessible and inclusive, or perhaps teaching or learning about this fascinating subject?

Then we'd like to hear from you!

Choose your theme from the areas of accessible tourism, culture and transportation and send your abstract by 3rd March to share and learn with the best at the 'Destinations for All' World Summit, Montreal 19 - 22 October 2014.

Note:


The deadline for submitting abstracts is the 3rd of March 2014.


More information is available at:

http://www.accessibletourism.org/?i=enat.en.events.1507

End Discrimination

Guide Dog Discrimination.jpg

ADVERTISEMENT: Image shows a dog's face, in what looks like a merging of a black lab and a golden retriever, looking directly at the viewer. There is a perfect line directly down the middle of the dog's face, in perfect symmetry separating both sides of the dog's face. One side is covered with black fur, the fur on the other side is white. The caption positioned just beneath the dog's eyes above 
the nose reads "BLACK OR WHITE: It's Time To End Discrimination." Further down there is additional text, in smaller print, white text on black fur. It reads: "Guide dogs are allowed into cafes and restaurants. Deny them access and you're breaking the law." Opposite the text, where the dog has white fur, is a logo of a dog wearing a harness with the word "Guide Dogs" and the website http://www.guidedogs.com.au/

Recommendations on Accessible Tourism

Today is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities!

For individuals with disabilities, travel and tourism can be an empowering experience. UNWTO is convinced that travel facilitation for people with disabilities is a vital element of any responsible and sustainable tourism development policy.

Download your own copy of UNWTO's recently updated Recommendations on Accessible Tourism here: http://ow.ly/rpcBT 

Learn more about UNWTO's accessible tourism work here: http://ow.ly/rpcj0
Today is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities!

 For individuals with disabilities, travel and tourism can be an empowering experience. 

UNWTO is convinced that travel facilitation for people with disabilities is a vital element of any responsible and sustainable tourism development policy. 

Download your own copy of UNWTO's recently updated Recommendations on Accessible Tourism here: http://ow.ly/rpcBT 

Learn more about UNWTO's accessible tourism work here: http://ow.ly/rpcj0

Tomorrow is the European Day of People with Disabilities including a 2-day conference by the European Commission. This year's focus is on accessible tourism. 


Accessible Tourism in Europe.jpg

Also: the winning city of the Access City Award for 2014 will be announced.

South Africa essays by Dan Gottlieb

September 2013 South Africa essays:

I just returned from 10 days in South Africa where I had the honor to witness the awesome perfection of nature. Thanks to Jennae Tachea and Access2Africa safaris, (www.access2africasafaris.com)( Contact Jennae  email -jennae@vodamail.co.za) I was able to get closer to nature than I have been in the 33 years I've been a quadriplegic. Because of her wealth of experience and great knowledge about the needs of the disabled, I had no difficulty with bathroom facilities, transportation or accessible restaurants. This was the first time in 33 years I didn't have to worry about details. What a relief!

Our party, which included friends and family, was treated to a luxurious first day at palatial gardens of Makaranga Lodge where we had no responsibility but to enjoy the beauty around us. The grounds were completely accessible, the monkeys were playful, the original sculptures were powerful and the view was indescribable!  A little later, we were introduced to our friendly and knowledgeable guide named Dave who seemed to know everything about the flora and fauna of South Africa.

We left the well manicured flora in that 5 star resort to have a completely different cultural experience. We were first taken to Leopards Walk, a Lodge with breathtaking views of the wildlife that is South Africa. Our chalet consisted of a very comfortable bedroom, bathroom with a wheel in shower and a hot tub! 3 of the walls were all glass which enabled us to see whatever animals were around as soon as we opened our eyes. This was a wonderful experience with warm and generous hosts.

Later that day, we were taken to one of Africa's many game preserves was simply breathtaking as we watched elephants, water Buffalo's, giraffes, hippos and many other species in their natural habitats. Natures perfection! Dave was so knowledgeable that he was able to spot some 25 elephants who would be crossing the road right in front of us. So he moved our vehicle in such a way that we were surrounded by these magnificent 4 ton animals as some came within 30 feet of our vehicle! Hearing what we humans have done to this animal population, I felt ashamed of my species. But that was all to change the next day.

I think the highlight of the trip for me was a visit to the Khulani Special Needs School. This is a school in the heart of rural Zululand which caters to over 100 children with a wide variety of disabilities from cerebral palsy to autism to intellectual disabilities and many more. This school had very little money to work with and children (all residential) slept on the floor on mats and not all of them had blankets or shoes. Their wheelchairs were not in good shape and I was told they didn't have equipment or parts. I watched as children with autism pushed children with cerebral palsy in broken down wheelchairs over this sandy terrain as both of them were laughing. There was no dining room as meals were picked up by each student and taken outside to be. And yet these children seem to be happy and filled with love. I spoke a few words to them and they surrounded me as I felt bathed in their sweetness. At that moment, I saw the best of humanity.

One of my great life lessons came from the woman who founded this school many years ago. She was now aging, overweight and walked with difficulty on a cane. Yet she had this beaming smile. I commented to her about how happy she looked to which she said: "as long as my hut is clean, I am happy." How many of us would be happier with that perspective.

And yes, I got to pet big cats, elephants, watch hippos while I was riding a wheelchair accessible riverboat.

One of my fellow travelers said that it would be very difficult for her to go back to the "real world".

"No, I said "this is the real world. Most of that stuff back there is the outward manifestation of human egos trying to move mountains. Where we are in South Africa we were surrounded with people who don't try to move them-they honor them."I'm making arrangements for my return trip as we speak.

Daniel Gottlieb Ph.D.

DrDanGottlieb@aol.com

www.DrDanGottlieb.com

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dan-gottlieb-phd


To contact Access2africasafaris- www.access2africasafaris.com or jennae email - jennae@vodamail.co.za or  Cell 0027 716753291 (South Africa)

Monthly Archives