Frail Care Centre gets new wheels

2015-05-19 06:00
Re-abled management members and residents of the Beaconvale Frail Care Centre in Eastridge with the bus that was donated by the Route Six Taxi Association. 

Samantha Lee

Re-abled management members and residents of the Beaconvale Frail Care Centre in Eastridge with the bus that was donated by the Route Six Taxi Association. PHOTO: Samantha Lee

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Transport is a bit easier for the residents of the Beaconvale Frail Care Centre now that they have their own bus.

The Route Six Taxi Association donated the bus after it heard of the centre’s transportation problem.

Henry Williams, Association chairperson, says they started off on the wrong foot.

“The City of Cape Town is our partner and one day they called us because there was a protest blocking a MyCiti bus. When I got there it was them,” he says, referring to the management of Re-abled.

They had been protesting the lack of accessibility for wheelchair-bound commuters in public transport services. “This is when I realised the need,” Henry says.

Re-abled director Taswell Williams confirms this: “I am overwhelmed that it has finally materialised. Transport is the biggest problem we face other than unemployment. Functional transport is our lifeline and this is really a huge step and will change many lives. We are really grateful,” says Taswell.

The bus still needs to be renovated to suit the needs of the home. Henry says he has been in conversation with many parties who have not contributed yet, but hopes they will soon.

“I informed Taswell that we do not have the lift and ramp yet but he said that they want the bus,” Henry says. It is estimated that the lift will cost R100 000.

Henry says this will also not be the end of the association’s relationship with the residents of the centre. “We hope to do more because we do not know if we could be in this position. This can happen to anyone,” he says. He hopes to get a car or two for the residents of the centre.

“We will be sending letters and emails to some people. We cannot make promises, but we will try,” he says.

The bus was initially meant for the use of the new district hospital but the initiative was a “failure”, Henry says. It was then decided to donate the bus to the centre for its personal use.

The bus has been named “A modern fairytale”

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