The QuadPara Association of South Africa (QASA) has declared Durban “The City of Choice for Tourists with Disabilities”. And to celebrate the International Day for Persons with Disabilities on 3 December last year, QASA deployed two more beach wheelchairs to the Durban beachfront. They were funded by the Rotary Club of Kloof and local motor business Approved Auto, to ensure that Durban remains the SA destination of choice for tourists with disabilities. (Picture: Two new beach wheelchairs were handed over to City manager Michael Sutcliff at Durban’s International Convention Centre.)“There is a market out there of tourists with disabilities and Durban has taken advantage of this with an accessible beachfront, a world-standard International Conference Centre (ICC) and the soon-to-be deployed “People Mover” bus service,” Says Ari Seirlis, National Director of QASA.
“Right now there are over 2000 persons with disabilities in Durban, many of them competing in the World Swimming Champs at the Kings Park Pool, and some attending the Disability Congress at the ICC. It is essential to add further value to the facilities and activities by giving persons with mobility impairments an opportunity to get to the ocean breakers with the beach wheelchair, and we are proud to have deployed 3 beach wheelchairs to the City.”
Rob Drake, owner of Approved Auto says, “Our slogan of ‘nice people to do business with’ has done well for us and we now extend that success to people with disabilities in Durban by donating a beach wheelchair to QASA so that Durban remains ‘a better place for persons with disabilities’.”
QASA aims to ensure that partnering with the City will make Durban barrier-free, ensuring integration and providing an accessible environment for everyone. With the 2010 Soccer World Cup in sight, disabled tourist access will be considered in all phases of infrastructure development for that event, making Durban’s potential of being the City of choice for disabled tourists a reality.