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Reach the summit with Te Kaiwhakatere – TrailRider

Climbing to the summit of Mauao is something many of us love to do, and it’s now a trip people with disabilities can experience using the city’s all-terrain wheelchair, Te Kaiwhakatere – TrailRider.

Tauranga City Council and Parafed Bay of Plenty are hosting a TrailRider Fun Day at Hopukiore - Mount Drury Reserve on Saturday 3 December 2022 to celebrate International Day of People with Disabilities.

With the help of whānau, friends and volunteers, four people will have the opportunity to be taken to the summit of Mauao on the day, while others will have the opportunity to take a shorter trip to the summit of Hopukiore - Mount Drury.

Te Kaiwhakatere – TrailRider is a motorised, single-wheeled mobility transport supporter which supports the rider’s weight with helpers to guide the rider up and down tracks. It is free to use and can be booked through Council’s website or in person at Mount Maunganui Beachside Holiday Park.

With 27 per cent of people in the Bay of Plenty identifying as living with a disability, Council purchased the TrailRider in 2020 to give more people an opportunity to move about easily and safely without being limited by the environment.

Tauranga resident and Parafed Bay of Plenty Board member Amanda Lowry, who uses a wheelchair after a surfing accident nine years ago, was one of the first people to travel to the summit of Mauao on the TrailRider.

“Being able to go up again with my whānau was a gift. Before my accident my partner and I would walk up at least twice a week carrying our daughter. What I loved about the TrailRider was that I was surrounded by my people - my kaiarahi. We laughed and chatted all the way as the kids walked up beside me. Even though I wasn't walking myself, it felt like it used to. The beautiful views that I thought I might never see again; immersed in nature. Being at the top, holding my partner and my kids was so emotional.”

The purpose of the TrailRider Fun Day is to create more awareness about Te Kaiwhakatere – TrailRider and encourage more people to use it. There will also be a range of accessible activities taking place throughout the Mount Maunganui North area on the day to celebrate accessibility and encourage more people to check out these spaces and the equipment for themselves.

“We want everyone to be able to enjoy and play a full and active part in our city. Te Kaiwhakatere – TrailRider is a great way to access some of the more hard-to-reach spots and we’d love to see more people using it,” says Dani Jurgeleit, Tauranga City Council’s Community Development Team Leader.

If you’d like to travel to the summits of either Mauao or Hopukiore - Mount Drury on the TrailRider Fun Day on 3 December 2022 please register your interest at www.tauranga.govt.nz/trailrider

You can register to have your whānau and friends take you to the summit, or volunteers will be available on the day to take you. Numbers are limited.

Council is also looking for volunteers for the day. The trip to the summit of Mauao requires a team of four to five guides so businesses, sports teams and other groups are also encouraged to register at www.tauranga.govt.nz/trailrider

Posted: Sep 16, 2022,
Categories: General,


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