About the Winner
This is based on the number of votes received and does not reflect the quality of the business or chances of winning.
I created TravelinWheels because, as a mom of a young adult who is a wheelchair athlete, I saw a desperate need for more detailed travel information available to people with disabilities.
The number of people with disabilities is growing. Current census numbers show that nearly 15% of all people in the world have a disability, and the number is expected to increase to 24% in the next ten years as more people live longer, and rehabilitation and medicine improve, allowing people with disabilities to lead more active lives.
People with disabilities dream of the wonder of travel, exploring new cultures, cuisines, and opening their minds to new ways of thinking. However, they are discouraged by the general lack of information, and even more so by the lack of specific accessibility information that pertains to them.
Those that are determined to travel spend countless hours researching, making phone calls, and surfing the internet. However, most of the time, they cannot find out the information they need. Reservations agents at hotels don't have the right information, and it's difficult to get a lay of the land. Many give up. Others don't even think it is possible.
I built the TravelinWheels searchable database that includes holistic, detailed information for destinations that include information from curb cuts to transportation accessibility, parking proximity, bed heights in hotels, bar placement in restrooms, lobby and restaurant layouts, and many other items necessary for people with sight, mobility and hearing impairments. Our information also helps people with autistic family members and even people who have small children and are pushing strollers.
Our website went live in May, 2011, and in the last year, we have over 2,400 pages of content, including 15 city guides, tips and tricks, travel stories, and blogs. We have been mentioned in Wall Street Journal, cnn.com, and other national publications.
Our goal is to ensure that everyone can travel at their own pace on their own terms, regardless of ability. We want families to travel stress free, spending more time enjoying each other and less time worrying about accessibility. We want those who thought they couldn't travel because of their limitations to be inspired, even if it is exploring their own home town.
I believe we should be considered for this award because we are actively working to solve an important problem for a growing segment of the population and improving the lives of those who wish to enjoy the benefits of travel. We are educating people on how to travel, despite their limitations, in an innovative way, and wish to continue our work.
We need more exposure, more funding, and more traffic to grow support for our work. We are not a 501c; we believe there is profit to be made that we can then turn into grant funding for the many non-for-profits that need assistance.