Empowering Adventures: Introducing New Zealand's First Wheelchair-Accessible Rental Motorhome
ACM Motorhomes is thrilled to announce a groundbreaking achievement in our continuous journey towards inclusivity and innovation: the launch of New Zealand's first rental motorhome designed specifically for wheelchair users. This initiative marks a significant milestone in our commitment to making travel accessible and enjoyable for everyone, including those with disabilities.
For over two decades, Catriona Williams, a passionate advocate for accessibility and adventure, dreamt of exploring the stunning landscapes of New Zealand. Despite her enthusiasm, the absence of accessible motorhome rental options posed a significant barrier. Unwilling to let this dream fade, Catriona envisioned a solution that would enable not just herself but many others to experience the joy of travel without limitations. Her determination set the wheels in motion for a project that would eventually bring this vision to life.
Thanks to the generous support of Greenstone Partners, Sitipek, the Hugo Charitable Trust, and an anonymous donor, we were able to embark on this ambitious project. Over $400,000 was raised, allowing ACM Motorhomes to take on the challenge of designing and building a motorhome that not only meets but exceeds the needs of wheelchair users. From the chassis up, every component was meticulously crafted by our designer and builder, Chris Cunard, ensuring that every detail catered to accessibility and comfort.
This motorhome is a testament to what can be achieved when innovation meets compassion. It features custom-made solutions to ensure easy access, an optimal driving or riding experience at the front, and surfaces at the right heights to foster a sense of independence and participation in all aspects of the holiday experience.
Priced at up to $425 per day for rent through Milner Mobility, a company specialising in wheelchair-accessible vehicles, this motorhome has sparked significant interest both locally and internationally. Darren Milner, the general manager of Milner Mobility, shared that the announcement has led to a surge in inquiries, highlighting the demand and need for such accessible travel options.
In a beautiful full-circle moment, around 60% of the rental fees will be donated to Catwalk, the spinal cord research trust founded by Catriona Williams, and the New Zealand Spinal Trust. This initiative not only offers a unique travel opportunity but also supports vital research and advocacy work for spinal cord injuries.
Hans Wouters, CEO of the New Zealand Spinal Trust, praised the project as a landmark achievement in making fully accessible travel a reality in New Zealand. This motorhome offers families the chance to create unforgettable memories with their loved ones who use wheelchairs, a possibility that was once merely a dream.
Catriona Williams is eagerly anticipating her first adventure in the motorhome, with plans to explore the beautiful South Island, visiting friends in Nelson, Marlborough, and Motueka. Her journey will undoubtedly inspire many more to embark on their own adventures, knowing that the freedom to explore is now within their reach.
At ACM Motorhomes, we are incredibly proud to have played a role in this transformative project. It stands as a shining example of our dedication to breaking down barriers and enriching the lives of those with disabilities through the power of travel. This initiative is just the beginning, and we look forward to continuing our efforts to make exploration and adventure accessible to all.