100 venues available at Accessible Qatar app
13 May 2017 - 3:31
By Raynald C Rivera / The Peninsula
Close to 100 venues across Qatar are now available at the Accessible Qatar app and website which provide people with disabilities information on how accessible a venue is.
Launched last year by Sasol, Accessible Qatar enables the disabled community to view public and tourist locations and outlets, know whether they are accessible and in what way.
“It’s the first app and website of its kind in the region which provides the disabled community with instant and reliable information about the accessibility of public and private venues across Qatar. With the support of trained accessibility auditors, Accessible Qatar has audited around 100 venues across Qatar including venues in retail, hospitality, tourism and public parks,” Phinda Vilakazi (pictured), President of GTL Ventures of Sasol, said recently at the inaugural Accessible Qatar conference.
“Combined with user reviews, the Accessible Qatar app has provided the disabled community with essential information as well as raised public awareness on the need for places to be accessible,” added Vilakazi.
Inspired by the “Definitely Able” conference held in 2015, the app was developed by Sasol in partnership with the Ministry of Municipality and Environment, Qatar Tourism Authority and Hamad Bin Khalifa University, among other institutions.
“We and many of our partners believe that there was real opportunity to improve the quality of public information on accessibility of public and private venues across Qatar. The voices of the disabled community were key to understanding the impact that accessibility has on the lives of those with disabilities. It was in response to the Definitely Able conference that Sasol launched the Accessible Qatar app in 2016,” he explained.
Recently, the Accessible Qatar app won Sasol the World Summit Award in the Inclusion & Empowerment Category.
Vilakazi stressed the “pending need for accessibility to be incorporated into all sectors of the Qatari economy in line with the Qatar National Vision 2030.”
The first Accessibility Qatar conference ran in parallel with Project Qatar, one of the largest construction exhibitions in the region.
“With the presence of many project developers, contractors, and construction managers, Project Qatar gives us a unique opportunity to connect, to inspire, and to engage to make existing and future venues accessible to all,” he ended.
To further encourage venues to be accessible to the disabled, Sasol has launched awards recognising the most accessible venues in Qatar for the mobility impaired.