by Suzanne Stays, The Mighty
Join us as we take a look at the 10 most accessible and wheelchair-friendly cities in the world.
Everyone comes back from Japan talking about how much they loved it, and you can too! There are plenty of elevators, priority ones for those who need them as well and the accessible public bathrooms are incredibly impressive. The major attractions are all close by an accessible train station and they are relatively easy to get around. Most of the museums are wheelchair friendly, as are the gardens such as Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, Nara Park and the Bamboo Forest, the Nijo Castle and most of the temples. Finding an accessible hotel can be an issue as Tokyo isn’t known for its large rooms, but it is possible. Just double check with the hotel about your own personal accessibility requirements.
Washington, DC, USA
Washington has been praised for having a highly visible community of people with disabilities due to the accessibility of the city. The public transportation is second to none; with lifts at each station, getting around is easy. There has been an active effort to make it inclusive — major attractions such as the Lincoln Memorial, Smithsonian Museum, National Zoo, Washington Monument, Holocaust Memorial Museum and the Kennedy Center are all wheelchair-friendly. The U.S. is known to be one of the most wheelchair accessible countries in the world, but this is one city you definitely don’t want to miss!
Berlin has to be on this list due to its investment in making its historical city more accessible. In 2013, it won the EU City Access Award from the European Commission due to its comprehensive policies for those with disabilities. The public transport system is almost 100 percent accessible as are the many attractions. However, there are few wheelchair accessible taxis. The Jewish Museum of Berlin, the Reichstag, Brandenburg Gate, Berlin Wall Memorial and many other theatres, museums and restaurants are all wheelchair friendly. This center of European history has mostly been rebuilt since World War II and has since invested in becoming an inclusive city for all.
Oslo is breathtaking, and not only because of the amount of wheelchair accessible options it has. This Scandinavian city has plenty of wheelchair friendly sights including the Munch Museum, Vigeland Park and opera house. It is quite a small city, but you can access one of the many wheelchair friendly ferries which provide tours of the local fjords, which are not to be missed. Do be aware though, it is the fourth most expensive city in the world. Nevertheless, as home of the Vikings, it shouldn’t be missed and the world’s most beautiful train ride, as rated by Lonely Planet, departs from Oslo — so you should definitely check it out while you’re there.
One of the best parts about Vienna is the friendly attitude of everyone. Waiters are more than happy to accommodate you in the smaller restaurants and strangers in the street will stop to help. Vienna has one of the most wheelchair-friendly public transportation systems in the world, with sidewalks and plenty of drop curbs you don’t need to fear getting around this gorgeous location. The museums, opera house and palaces are also plenty accessible. The Stephansplatz is a pedestrian-only area filled with live music, restaurants, shops and more. Some of the shops do have a step up, but there are plenty with flat entryways.
While you may need to navigate the rain for this gorgeous area of Europe, you shouldn’t skip on it due to its accessibility. Despite a few cobblestones here or there, the majority of sidewalks do have dropped curbs and most venues have flat entryways. Moreover, the government is now only issuing new taxi licenses to wheelchair accessible vehicles, so there is an ample supply. Accessible hotel rooms are everywhere with plenty of roll-in showers. The most crucial sights to see such as the Trinity Library and Guinness Brewery are also wheelchair-friendly, so make sure you pop in to try a pint from the birthplace of beer itself.
If you’ve ever tried to venture onto a beach in a wheelchair and had the sinking into the sand feeling, you might be asking, why is the Caribbean on this list? Well, since the launch of their fully accessible Barbados program, this tropical paradise is making strides towards being a wheelchair-friendly destination. The majority of resorts have floating beach wheelchairs for you to enjoy the turquoise waters like never before. You can visit Heroes Square, the George Washington House, Harrison’s Cave via their accessible tram and even enter St. John’s Parish Church.
When we say the most accessible city, this one might be teetering on the edge due to the miles of cobblestone streets that fill the ancient quarters. In December 2012, the Knesset passed a comprehensive law requiring the majority of venues to be disability accessible by 2018. Some of the ramps are steep, but if you’re willing to brave it, then you can enter some of the most ancient wonders such as the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Western Wailing Wall and museums. The entire city is also filled with wheelchair taxis to help you dodge some of those cobblestones. Make sure you also venture to Mount Scopus and Haas Promenade to take in the breathtaking views of the entire city.
Slovenia is a small country in the middle of Europe that only became independent in 1991. Its stunning capital city has progressed rapidly, making it one of the most accessible cities in Europe. The entire city is filled with appropriate ramps and dropped curbs, while the major tourist areas are pedestrian only, which also makes it so much easier to get around. Moreover, the museums, parks and other attractions have also been rebuilt to be wheelchair accessible since the earthquake in 1895 reduced the area to ruins. The alpine areas surrounding the city are also accessible by tram. The city hosts the country’s castle as well as a host of ancient bridges boasting Italian architectural influence.
For an ancient city, Rome is incredibly advanced for their accessibility. Although there aren’t any ramps on the Spanish steps and there are still plenty of cobblestone streets about, Rome is home to over 700 accessible hotels which are suitable for people with varying amounts of mobility. Moreover, there are plenty of accessible transportation options and ramps on many of the curbs, plus accessible bus tours to help you see all of Rome including the trickier bits to navigate. Main attractions such as the Colosseum, Palatine Hill, Roman Forum, St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican Museum, Capitoline Museum, Pantheon, Trevi Fountain and the Villa Borghese are accessible. You can definitely experience Rome to the max, but bear in mind it is still an ancient city, so do your research.
The Mobility City franchise system has a uniform set of brand standards that result in predictable and consistent service throughout our network. Every franchisee must meet the standards set forth in this agreement.
About Mobility City Communication:
✓ We answer phone calls, promptly!
✓ Service visits are made quickly.
✓ We keep you up to date with the repair process in a timely & professional manner.
✓ We let you know when the service is completed, and verify the customer is satisfied with our work.
About Mobility City Technicians:
✓ All technicians are courteous, uniformed, and operate in a branded van.
✓ All technicians have been vetted with background checks.
✓ All technicians have had training from manufacturers.
✓ All technicians provide white glove service, delivery, set up and product training.
✓ All technicians are experts in troubleshooting issues on power chairs and mobility scooters for our manufacturers.
About Mobility City Services:
✓ We aim to be a one-visit repair service company and succeed in most cases.
✓ Our branded vans are equipped with tools and parts on-board for most repairs.
✓ We conduct repairs, cleaning and sanitizing on premise.
✓ We carry batteries and chargers on-board every van.
✓ We sanitize the mobility equipment we service to hygienic standards.
✓ We return products to the manufacturer promptly, when requested by clients.
✓ We can provide loaner equipment when required.
✓ We have a fair and balanced “flat rate” service fee schedule.
Mobility City promises clean, competent, and fast service!
Movement based on chanting, playing music, listening and moving to music
• Can be done sitting or standing
• Start with a warm up — 3-5 minutes
• Move with the music for Music therapies can be effective in gait training by providing a steady rhythm for gait and stride
• Simple rhythmic movements around a room, or shifting from one foot to the other, and alternating arm swings while sitting in a chair are staples of PD yoga classes
• Movement with music to improve endurance, range of motion, strength, and hand coordination; these effects are enhanced when the movements cross the midline of the body (think eagle arms or self-hugging, touching opposite ear, or crossing hand to opposite knee in a seated twist), due to the brain hemisphere coordination required in these actions
• Rhythm awareness (working with breath ratio, moving to the rhythm of the breath, orkriyas - yoga actions with specific intention, usually performed to repetitively prescribed tempos)
• End with a cool down using balance moves
• Then sing your breath to use the voice as much as possible; this might include alternate nostril breathing with a 3:3:3 ratio (inhale 3, hold 3, exhale 3); work your way up to 6 or 7 seconds, or moving the arms up for a count of four, out for a count of four, and down for a count of four
Tina Pressly is CEO of Mobility City of Upstate SC
This recognition was part of a nationwide observation of Falls Prevention Awareness Day that featured education and fun.
Lombard, Illinois (Oct 9, 2019) –Each year, thousands of educators, caregivers, health and aging professionals, and older adults across the country focus their efforts on one goal: preventing falls. That’s why Mobility City of DuPage County partnered with the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and the Falls Free® Initiative to celebrate Falls Prevention Awareness Day on September 23. This year’s activities focused on the teamwork needed to prevent falls effectively.
Falls are a leading cause of injury for people aged 65 and older, but they are not an inevitable part of aging. There are proven ways to prevent them. Mobility City’s fun community realization will empower older adults to stay active, independent, and safe in their homes and communities.
Across the country, partners hosted classes and seminars, performing thousands of falls risk screenings, and educated older adults about evidence-based falls prevention programs.
“If falls prevention isn’t something that you’re thinking about now, I promise there is someone in your life who’s worried about it,” said Frank Gazzolo, Owner and President of Mobility City of DuPage County. “This kind of education can change a community, and that’s why we’re proud to support Falls Prevention Awareness Day as part of our year-round commitment to supporting older adults in DuPage County.”
“Falls prevention is a team effort that takes a balance of education, intervention, and community support,” said Kathleen Cameron, Senior Director of NCOA’s National Falls Prevention Resource Center. “This is an opportunity to empower and educate everyone about their roles in preventing falls.”
NCOA hosted a Falls Prevention Awareness Day national photo contest, a live video broadcast and discussion on Facebook with experts and seniors on September 23, and a Twitter chat for aging services professionals on September 24.
To find out more about Falls Prevention Awareness Day, go to www.ncoa.org/FPAD.
The National Council on Aging (NCOA) is the national voice for every person’s right to age well. NCOA empowers individuals with trusted solutions to improve their own health and economic security—and protects and strengthens federal programs that people depend on as they age. Working with a nationwide network of partners, NCOA’s goal is to improve the lives of 10 million older adults by 2020. Learn more at ncoa.org and @NCOAging.
About the Falls Free® Initiative
Led by the National Council on Aging, the Falls Free® Initiative includes 43 states and 70 national organizations, professional associations, and federal agencies working collaboratively to bring education, awareness, and evidence-based solutions to local communities. Falls Free® seeks to provide hundreds of thousands of older Americans with the resources and education needed to reduce their risk of injury. For more information, visit: www.ncoa.org/FallsFreeInitiative. Use #FPAD2019 to join the conversation on social media.
DuPage County Chicago Area
Mobility City of DuPage County, in the Chicago Area, has now been open for six months. Beth and Frank Gazzolo have an excellent team in place to serve all of DuPage County and beyond. Beth likens the experience that Mobility City provides to her local auto shop. When she brings her car in for repairs, she doesn't question the quality of service, or the fairness in price.
Cook County Chicago Area
Please welcome Geoff Hanson who purchased the Mobility City of Cook County, in the Chicago Area. He will be serving over 5 million people in Cook County. Geoff is looking to build a multi-unit business with over ten trucks. He will be open later this year.
Greater Cleveland Area
Please welcome Marsha and Paul Adair who purchased Mobility City of the Greater Cleveland Area. They will be serving 1.3 million people in 2 counties. Marsha and Paul have a desire to give back to the community. They will be open in the next 2 months.
Mobility City is operating in 13 states with 17 locations serving major cities and over 40 million people: Tennessee, Pennsylvania (2 locations), Texas, Florida (3 locations), South Carolina, North Carolina, Illinois (2 locations), Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Connecticut, Oklahoma, and Ohio.
Coming Soon: Long Island, Atlanta, Cincinnati, New Jersey, Maryland, and Illinois (3rd location).
Mobility City donated cleaning and repair time to the Veterans living in nursing homes during Memorial Day...cleaning and repairing over 40 wheelchairs:
The 12th annual Falls Prevention Awareness Day (FPAD) is September 23, 2019. This year we want to remind everyone that falls prevention is a team effort.
• Your pharmacist is part of your falls prevention team! The @National Council on Aging and The American Society of Consultant Pharmacists created a toolkit for clinicians to assess falls risk. https://www.ascp.com/page/fallstoolkit
• Falls are NOT a normal part of aging, and you have a team to help prevent them! Watch this award-winning video showing 6 simple steps which prevent falls. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t7lC5Pdpx_k
• Preventing falls is a team effort. Show your support for Falls Prevention Awareness Day on Sept. 23 by sharing these tips with friends and family! https://www.ncoa.org/healthyaging/falls-prevention/preventing-falls-tips-for-older-adults-and-caregivers/6-steps-to-protectyour-older-loved-one-from-a-fall/
• It’s easier to prevent falls when your whole team knows the risks. Share these important falls prevention facts with friends and family! https://www.ncoa.org/wp-content/uploads/Myths-ofOlder-Adult-Falls_2017.pdf
• A home can be equipped to help prevent falls. If you’re looking for a place to start investigating the kinds of modifications needed, take a look at this program with options for individuals, families, and professionals in your area: http://stopfalls.org/resources/home-modification-toolsprograms-and-funding-landingpage/
• Older adults should feel confident they have a team to help prevent falls. Watch the @National Council on Aging’s Facebook video on Sept. 23 @ 12:00 p.m. ET to learn how family, caregivers, and healthcare professionals all play a role in keeping seniors healthy. https://www.facebook.com/NCOAging
• Talk with professionals from aging organizations across the country about the ways older adults can use their whole network to prevent falls. From doctors and pharmacists to caregivers and seniors, you’ll learn what everyone can do to makes falls prevention teamwork successful. Join the annual Falls Prevention Awareness Day Twitter Chat on Sept. 24 @ 1:00 p.m. ET https://www.twitter.com/ncoaging
Mobility City of DuPage County enjoyed the week July 24th-28th in Wheaton, Illinois at the 2019 DuPage County Fair. Mobility City provided wheelchair and mobility scooter rentals to the fairground guests. Mobility City had plenty of Drive Medical wheelchairs, and Golden Technology mobility scooters to choose from.
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Copyright @ 2019 FDG Family Enterprises Inc.
Copyright @ 2019 FDG Family Enterprises Inc.