The real problem …

by convenor on 18/07/2015

In coming up with a solution to get Shut-in Seniors out and about, we weren’t the first to recognise the real problem with getting around on our roads. We are, however, the first to see how Seniors can benefit from it.

When asked about the issue, Sydney drivers often simplistically respondTraffic Gridlock, “It’s a parking lot out there. There are too many cars” or “We need better roads”. And each of these responses is legitimate. But there is another way to view the situation.

Recently,Stewart Husband of Kurri Kurri, NSW wrote to The NRMA’s Open Road magazine (below) with a perspective far different from the usual answers.

He said, ” It’s time to look at the real problem. Almost every car in the gridlock has (only) one person in it”.

Under the design of the HillsCarPal Seniors Transportation service, Seniors benefit when drivers join us to offer Rides to Shut-in Seniors on trips the drivers are taking anyway. The Senior gets a Ride and the driver detours only a little out of their way for pickup & drop off. Drivers have complete control over when and where offers of a lift are made. It a very simple way to have two people (or more) travel in one car but it is only the start.

Open Road JUL-AUG15 (Letter - Stewart Husband)Governments can’t afford the public and/or transport services that the growing numbers of older citizens will require as the population ages. More car-sharing schemes is what is needed to address the chronic shortfall in services for our car-less elderly. Without a significant expansion of such services, older drivers will be forced to hold on to their licences for longer putting stress on themselves and their loved-ones, not to mention other road users.

What is badly needed in Seniors Transportation is the development of community-based solutions like HillsCarPal, but on a much larger scale.

And such programs don’t even need to be orchestrated by community organisations, as we demonstrated recently when launching our Ride/Selfie Challenge. Ride-Selfie Challenge-Panel-GraphicThey can be a spontaneous actions taken by individuals who are encouraged by community leaders to adopt the idea that helping the elderly is something that community-minded drivers can and should be doing.


The question is, “Will our community step up or will the old-old be left out in the cold as ‪#‎ShutinSeniors‬ ?”

Love to hear your take on this question

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