Chennai

There is now help in getting to the polling booth

Senior citizens and those with disabilities who may need a wheelchair and also a vehicle that factors in their unique limitations, to get to the polling booth, now know where to look for it.

Vidya Sagar, an NGO working for persons with disabilities, started Get Going two years ago to help those with varying disabilities to travel comfortably in an inclusive vehicle.

“This was largely being availed by the alumni and staff of Vidya Sagar who want to get to their workplace or travel independently. We have two of these inclusive vehicles and we are now offering them to those who may need them to get to the polling booth, at ₹25 per kilometre (Kotturpuram being the start and end point). The vehicle has to be booked at least a day in advance, ” says M. Abhishek, coordinator, Get Going.

Equipped with a hydraulic lift, the Tata Winger can accommodate up to three wheelchairs with four additional seats. There are three drivers specially trained to meet the needs of the special-needs people.

“Prior to the pandemic, we had the vehicles making trips to different parts of the city to ferry people. Many even availed them for their weekend outings. Recently, we had the vehicle make a trip to Vellore,” says Abhishek.

For bookings, call 9444398182

‘Helpee Hands’

Helpee and Sarada Foundations have launched an initiative to help senior citizens reach the voting centre or access any other assistance relating to the voting process. ‘Voting Assist’ can be availed either through WhatsApp or a call by posting the task and a ‘Helpee Hand’ will reach out to the individual.

Helpee is a two-year-old start-up whose workers run errands and organise hospital visits for seniors. They also train them on how to use the Internet. “Assistance to walk to the polling station/ wheelchair support/ transport arrangement to get to the centre/ queries with regard to the voting centre — we expect requests for any of these services or a mix of them to come up on our platform,” says Suman Choudhary, founder, Helpee.

He says ‘Helpee Hands’ are verified and background-checked from the local community. The two organisations also ensure senior citizens receive their vaccinations without any hassle. As per its website, the first 300 elders get this service at no cost.

For details, visit www.helpee.in or call 8861608484


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Printable version | Aug 12, 2022 8:47:21 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/there-is-now-help-in-getting-to-the-polling-booth/article34230429.ece