Saturday, August 16, 2014

SVP (Sherpa Volunteer Program) thoughts

The Ballarat TrailRider brochure - click
to view. Remember it's a folded booklet
so the pages appear in an odd order
The other day Craig Donaldson (Ballarat Access and Inclusion), Rodney Brooke (Australian sherpa king) and I had a very useful meeting concerning SVPs for Shire chairs.

The SVP concept, which so favourably influences the uptake of TrailRiders, is well-understood and rolling on  in Parks Victoria thanks to John Kenwright.

In Shires not yet. There needs to be an established volunteer program of some kind and there needs to be a definite way that liability for volunteer sherpas can be effectively covered. A sane approach is that somewhere, some time, a sherpa or rider will be hurt and that must be planned for.

Ballarat is well onto this and Craig is planning some kind of round table meeting of appropriate participants and hopefully nut this one out and, by the way, show other Shires the way to go.

If you are a Facie, here is another chance to Like the Ballarat Visitor Information Centre (where their TrailRider lives) page:

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Five NEW TrailRiders on their way (16 altogether!)

The official announcements are still to come so I don't quite "count" them yet. That moment will come when they can go in the Directory with a phone number to use each chair.

However it is underway and when complete will bring the total number of TrailRiders in Australia to 16.

All five chairs are at about the same stage of evaluation and assessment of specific deployment details.

"Cradle Mountain/New South Wales/Apollo Bay have recently received their TrailRider(s) and staff are in the process of assessing tracks for suitability with the aim of a public launch later this year. More news and updates will be provided soon.”

It is especially gratifying to see that SVPs (Sherpa Volunteer Programs) are part of those assessments.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Destinations For All - Destinations Pour Tous

John Kenwright - off to Canada. He has made the whole
TrailRider dream a reality
Bilingual Montreal is hosting a World Summit in October that focusses on tourism that includes everyone. To quote the organisers:
It is our pleasure to welcome you to Montreal, for the 1st ever World Summit Destinations for All. The issue of accessible tourism has never been more relevant: 15% of the world’s population live with a disability, and with a greater aging demographic, this number will only increase. It is time to think of tourism no longer solely as a luxury, but as a need that is shared by everyone. By making tourism accessible to all, destinations are also:
  • Responding to the reality of an aging population
  • Providing a more inclusive focus on all customer requirements
  • Winning the loyalty of  travellers
  • Distinguishing themselves from the competition
  • Contributing to their destinations’ civic pride
Our very own John Kenwright is travelling to Canada and presenting a paper describing the exciting initiative, TrailRider included, that Parks Victoria has made in this area.Checkout the abstract.

He will also be visiting Vancouver, the birthplace of the TrailRider and catch up with Stephen Hunter from the  Sam Sullivan Disability Foundation who make it all happen.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

20,000 page views!

For me this is quite a moment.

The certificate was made by my daughter, Jo, in March to celebrate 10,000 page views since September 2012.

Five months later page views (for us bloggers the lifeblood) have doubled. In case you wonder I have asked Blogger not to count my own views.

It is exciting to think that the community of people that take an interest in TrailRiders in Australia is growing.

There are 16 TrailRiders now in Australia but 5 are still to be launched officially so I will wait to post and update the directory.

The next big, and ongoing, push is to get a SVP (Sherpa Volunteer Program) going alongside each chair. The Grampians has one. Daylesford almost has and plans are well-advanced for Ballarat and Canberra.