The Motability Scheme Archives - Driving Mobility

Vlogger Emily with Cerebral Palsy aims to stop discrimination through independent driving

YouTuber Emily Roberts, 22 from Swansea and wheelchair user, is aiming to highlight achievement with disability through her ability to drive independently thanks to Driving Mobility.

YouTuber Emily Roberts, 22 from Swansea and wheelchair user, is aiming to highlight achievement with disability through her ability to drive independently thanks to Driving Mobility.

Wheelchair user Emily is a passionate vlogger and works as an admin assistant in a bridal shop. She believes disability is not represented enough in the media and people with restricted mobility are a ‘lost group’ within society. She is determined through her YouTube videos to change the mindset of able-bodied people so they understand what can be achieved with a disability. Emily regular encounters phrases such as ‘I’m surprised people like you can do that’ which passively discriminates against disabled individuals when discussing aspirations and achievements. Emily aims to stop this as much as she can – starting with videos that explain how she drives independently as a wheelchair user.

Emily owns a car leased through the Motability scheme which has been specifically adapted following guidance from the Driving Mobility Centre based at Rookwood Hospital, Llandaff. Operated by the South Wales Mobility & Driving Assessment Service, a charity part funded by the Welsh Government, has helped Emily gain her full driving licence so she can ‘prove to the world what is possible with cerebral palsy’.

Emily first discovered Driving Mobility at a local disability youth group. The subject of assisted driving came up and the centre at Rookwood Hospital was discussed. Emily was slightly dubious and confused about the possibility of driving with her condition however she made contact and an appointment was arranged at The South Wales Mobility & Driving Assessment Service. This centre is part of the national Driving Mobility network which provides professional support and guidance for drivers with restricted mobility. Service users self-refer or are signposted from the DVLA, Motability, Police and healthcare professionals. Each centre aims to provide independence to all people, of any age, who have restricted mobility or have experienced a life changing diagnosis.

Emily watched several YouTube videos showing various adapted car controls however she needed professional guidance from Driving Mobility to recommend the most appropriate systems for her. Emily went along to the centre and completed a driving assessment: “I already had my provisional licence and had passed the theory test at 19. However, to gain my full driving licence I needed lessons in an adapted car which suited my disability, I planned to apply for one from Motability.  When I went to Rockwood Hospital the Occupational Therapists and Approved Driving Instructors were all so lovely – firstly I completed a medical questionnaire to check my current condition including medication levels. My dosage was low so no problem there and as my disability only affects my legs the process began of determining the right controls for me. They had a fancy hi-tech driving simulator which I tried with different types of adaptations. They also took me through a brochure of different options and then we went out on the road in one of their cars. The have a big fleet of vehicles to try there. The car I drove included the type of controls that the centre recommended however they said it would still be a bit of trial and error to get the exact solution that was right for me. I was accompanied by a Driving Instructor and OT so felt safe and confident. The experience was amazing, it was a great day!”

Once Emily was happy with the recommended adaptations, she began the process of applying for a Motability vehicle. The car would be fitted with a steering ball plus grip and push-pull hand controls for accelerating/braking – inbuilt buttons for indicators and secondary functions. Driving Mobility signposted Emily to a selection of local vehicle convertors of which she chose LTC Mobility in Llanelli to adapt her Renault Clio. Once her Motability car was ready, Emily was introduced to a selection of specialist instructors so she could begin driving lessons: “The instructor I chose was really well experienced and gave me lots of confidence. I only needed lessons for six months and passed at the first attempt!”

“I think Driving Mobility are awesome – to think they were my first port of call and got the job done so well… I’m forever indebted. Also, the fact that they didn’t just focus on driving, but gave me solutions for all the other stuff, was superb. This started right from the off when I got into an assessment car – they immediately suggested a transfer board to bridge the gap between wheelchair and driver’s seat. Being able to store and access my wheelchair easier was also solved. They questioned how I intended to get my wheelchair in and out of the car especially as I’m petite. Folding and lifting my wheelchair would have been a nightmare so they recommended a ‘roof topper’ box. It’s so clever – it lifts and lowers my wheelchair right next to the driver’s door and stores it on the roof, really accessible. Even my binman has said its ‘so cool’!”

Being able to drive has literally changed Emily’s life. Spending time with her friends and shopping are always top of her list along with enjoying the local music scene: “Admittedly gigs are off at the moment but that hasn’t stopped me going out whilst following the social distancing guidelines. Most of my friends have never driven, I’d say about 60% don’t drive as they see driving as stressful. This means I’m the main driver to pick people up one at a time these days. I have my freedom… it’s the best thing in the world and reflects my abilities as a disabled person.”

Emily concludes: “When disabled individuals are pigeon-holed as ‘people like you’ it really frustrates me. There is always ability in every disability and I want able bodied people to understand and appreciate that. My vlogging aims to encourage, educate and empower ­– both to help fellow disabled people and the general public. I’d rather people be inquisitive than ignorant. Even when I passed my driving test, I received comments that implied a person with cerebral palsy should never be able to drive. This needs to change and will.”

“I can’t thank the team enough at Driving Mobility for helping me achieve my goal and I continue to admire what they do every day. They make sure as many people as possible can live their life to the full; championing independence and supporting people to adapt in an unadapted world. Even when I started driving full-time they followed up with calls to check I was doing ok… they really care. For anyone looking to drive with a disability I’d say this…don’t give up and believe in yourself. Never put timescales on milestones and always be proud of what you have achieved. Achievement can be taxing with a disability however this means the prize is even more rewarding in the end.”

Motability Post FAQs from the Motability Scheme regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on website

Motability updates website to include a useful list of FAQs regarding COVID-19.

Motability has recently (23 April 2020) updated its website to include a useful list of FAQs regarding COVID-19.

The new website page states: “The Government announcements regarding COVID-19 are having a major impact on the Motability Scheme. Most dealership showrooms are now closed meaning they are unable to accept any orders, manage handovers, or car returns.

With the uncertainty that this is creating for many of us, we wanted to reassure you that we will support you where possible to help you remain mobile during this time. Our teams have now relocated to enable remote working, but like many organisations, we are working with fewer numbers of colleagues, so would ask for your support if we are unable to come back to you as soon as usual.”

The list of FAQs includes answers to commonly asked questions such as:

  • My lease expires in the next three months, what will happen if I can’t place an application for a new car?
  • I have placed an application, will the handover of my car go ahead?
  • I was in the process of choosing my first car on the Scheme but had not yet placed an application, can I still go ahead?
  • I do not want to place a renewal application, how do I hand my car back?
  • What will happen with my Good Condition Bonus?

Plus many more…..

There is also a section for scooter and powered wheelchair customers

Please visit the link below to view the full list:

FAQs from the Motability Scheme regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

 

Motability cancel regional One Big Day events and postpone The Big Event

Due to the current COVID-19 situation, Motability regret to announce the cancellation of some of their regional One Big Day events and the postponement of The Big Event.

Due to the current COVID-19 situation, Motability, has regretfully announced the cancellation of some of their  regional One Big Day events and the postponement of The Big Event.

In an online statement they said “The safety of all event visitors continues to be our number one priority and therefore we have taken the decision to cancel One Big Day Northern Ireland (6 June 2020) and One Big Day Exeter (25 July 2020). Additionally, The Big Event due to take place at the NEC on the 3 & 4 July 2020 is now postponed until further notice. We apologise for any disappointment this may cause.

You can keep up to date with all Motability One Big Day Events here: https://www.motability.co.uk/news/one-big-day/

Driving Mobility’s DrivAbility and RDAC successfully showcased services at The Big Event

‘The Big Event’ is Motability’s flagship event and the teams had a busy two days on the Driving Mobility stand.

Teams from Derby DrivAbility and Birmingham’s Regional Driving Assessment Centre (RDAC) represented Driving Mobility at Motability’s ‘The Big Event’ on Friday 28 June and Saturday 29 June 2019.

‘The Big Event’ is Motability’s flagship event and the teams had a busy two days on the Driving Mobility stand.

Henna Zaman, Derby DrivAbility and Steve Dent, RDAC (above) were ready and waiting to say hello to visitors on day one. They answered any questions visitors had about assessment centre services, driving assessments, modifications, adaptations, driving safety and vehicle loading. They also demonstrated the Ford C Max to visitors.

In addition to the stand activity Steve Dent, Assessment Manager, and Barbara Hutton, Occupational Therapist delivered talks on ‘advice and support available at driving assessment centres’ in the busy main Speaker Area.

The One Big Day programme of events will now take place in four locations across the country, offering disabled motorists and their families the chance to discover worry-free motoring.  The regional One Big Days are free to attend and offer visitors the chance to see a large display of vehicles for disabled people.

The event will showcase:

  • Over 50 cars from 25 different manufacturers
  • Over 20 adapted cars and Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles (WAV)
  • Over 35 scooters and powered wheelchairs
  • Specialist advice from our Scheme partners

At One Big Day Exeter specialist advice will be available from:

  • Motability Scheme advisors
  • Adaptation and WAV specialists
  • Disabled Motoring UK
  • Driving Mobility
  • Kwikfit, RAC and RSA Motability

The One Big Day event dates and venues are:

  • One Big Day at Westpoint, Exeter, Saturday 27 July 2019
  • One Big Day at Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate, Saturday 10 August 2019
  • One Big Day at East of England Arena, Peterborough, Saturday 7 September 2019
  • One Big Day at Royal Highland Centre, Edinburgh, Saturday 21 September 2019

Please check the Motability website for more information: https://www.motability.co.uk/news-views-and-events/one-big-day/

 

Motability’s One Big Day in Peterborough

East Anglian DriveAbility and Hertfordshire Action on Disability Mobility Care are delighted to be attending Motability’s One Big Day on Saturday 8th September in Peterborough

One Big Day Peterborough

East Anglian DriveAbility and Hertfordshire Action on Disability Mobility Care are delighted to be attending Motability’s One Big Day at the East of England Arena in Peterborough on Saturday 8th September 2018, 9am – 4pm.

This is a fantastic opportunity to discover to talk to the friendly Driving Mobility centres and find out what each of the driving assessment centres do and the different services they have to offer. The teams will be able to supply professional, high quality information, advice and assessment to people who need to gain or retain independence through mobility.

One Big Day at the East of England Arena provides the perfect opportunity to discover everything you need to know about worry-free motoring with Motability. There is a huge range of cars, adaptations, Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles, scooters and powered wheelchairs on display and what’s more, admission is free!

A fun, fact-finding day out for all the family!

 

 

 

One Big Day Event in Harrogate

Saturday 11 August 2018 – 9am to 4pm – Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate

One Big Day on 11 August at the Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate provides the perfect opportunity to discover everything you need to know about worry-free motoring with Motability. There is a huge range of cars, adaptations, Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles, scooters and powered wheelchairs on display and what’s more, admission is free!

At One Big Day Harrogate specialist advice will be available from:

  • Motability Scheme advisors
  • Adaptation and WAV specialists
  • Disabled Motoring UK
  • Driving Mobility
  • Kwikfit, RAC and RSA Motability

All Motability Scheme events bring everything available on the Motability Scheme together in great accessible locations, to make joining the Scheme as easy and informed as possible. They’re totally free and a great day out for all the family. At One Big Day, Harrogate there will be:

  • A huge display of cars, WAVs, adaptations and scooters
  • The opportunity to test drive adapted and non-adapted cars
  • Motability Scheme advisors available to chat to
  • Free parking, free tea, coffee or soft drink
  • A children’s play area including a jumping castle and more

Find out more here: https://www.motability.co.uk/news-views-and-events/one-big-day/

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