Handiroad, a GPS app for people in wheelchairs conceived by a mother from Bordeaux

Handiroad, a GPS app for people in wheelchairs conceived by a mother from Bordeaux

In France, 7.7 million people have disabilities.
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The app aims to be the equivalent of Waze for people with disabilities, by allowing its users to report various obstacles on the road.

Le Figaro Bordeaux

Getting around the city in a wheelchair is not an easy task. People with limited mobility regularly encounter hard-to-reach spaces, very high sidewalks, the absence of adequate elevators or ramps, as well as poorly parked work areas and vehicles. To combat this, a mother from Bordeaux decided to launch a GPS application specifically for people with disabilities entitled Handerwad. Although this cannot eliminate the problems associated with urban planning, it nevertheless aims to simplify the lives of millions of people.

The idea is that “Facilitate and secure the travel of people with limited mobility and their caregivers, thanks to features such as alert reporting, geolocation, departure confirmation and third-party access.”as “More is coming”, specifies startup. Stephanie Gatto, founder of Handiroad, is “Single mother with multiple disabilities”Who supports his son Calixte “Daily Assistant”. Mother says so “When we have to go out, he is the one pushing his mother in the wheelchair. He puts all his heart and all his strength into it, but he stumbles on the sidewalks, gets angry at the poorly parked cars blocking our passage, and the garbage cans…”.

He has won 17 awards since 2018

It was during one of these complicated moments, when Stephanie Gatto took out her cell phone to find directions using the Waze GPS app — despite the pain caused by these hiccups she encountered during her wheelchair journey — that her son had the idea to create “Waze for the disabled to report obstructions”. A few years later, the Handiroad project was born and is already on the rise, having already received 17 awards since 2018. The application will also be presented this year at VivaTech, the annual event dedicated to innovative technology in Paris, where it was chosen as a favorite.

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In France, there are 7.7 million people with disabilities and they are supported by 9.3 million caregivers, including many children and adolescents who care for an ill and isolated parent. For them, a solution like Handiroad can be very useful, because Stephanie Gatto points out “The problem has no age or gender and is universal.”. The businessman from Bordeaux now wants to develop partnerships with communities and find funding to develop the new version of this mobile application, which is currently under development, in order to make it as effective and accessible as possible.

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