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Have a Go Day returns for 2017

9522 November 2017 – Alinker walking bikes, alternative sports and the city’s accessible buses will all feature during Have A Go Day on Saturday, 2 December.

CATCHING THE BUS: Bus driver Fiona Hawkins with John McIntosh, Gerri Pomeroy and Judy Small with her dog Hetta at last year’s Have a Go Day.

Have a Go Day is an annual collaboration between Hamilton City Council, Life Unlimited Charitable Trust, Waikato Regional Council and CCS Disability Action, and is held on the same weekend as UN International Day for People with Disabilities, Sunday, 3 December.

Hamilton City Council’s Disability Advisor Judy Small says New Zealanders need to be aware of the country’s aging population and the likelihood more New Zealanders will begin to encounter disability and impairment in their lives.

“It’s important New Zealanders don’t automatically equate disability or impairment with a life without fun, keeping fit and recreation,” Ms Small says. “So with Have a Go Day this year, we’ve put an emphasis on recreation and exercise. We want people to stop, chat and try out what we’ll be displaying.”

The Alinker bikes – a non-motorised walking bike with no pedals that is an exercise option for people with physical impairments – are being presented by Life Unlimited Charitable Trust.

The bikes are designed so users are seated upright and at eye level to others.

“We’re looking forward to supporting Have a Go Day again in 2017,” says Life Unlimited Chief Executive Mark Brown.

“We recognise that sport offers many opportunities for disabled people to live well, make new friends and be involved in the community.”

Have a Go Day 2017 will also feature the hybrid sport wheelchair basketball.

Waikato Regional Council will have one of its accessible buses on display. All Hamilton buses are fully accessible and lower to curb height for easy entry and exit for wheelchair users, people with prams, walkers and other mobility aids.

“Everyone will be able to check out how accessible and easy to use Hamilton’s buses are,” said Waikato Regional Council’s Public Transport Operations manager Andrew Wilson.

“For some people, buses provide independence and a primary means of transport that’s absolutely vital to their quality of life. We’re really proud of our bus network in the Waikato, especially as all of our buses are completely accessible for wheelchairs, walkers and people with mobility aids,” says Mr Wilson.

BUSIT staff will be available on the day to help with any bus-related questions and journey planning advice – from what bus route works best for users, to one-on-one help with the Transit Real-Time app, through to showing wheelchair users how easy it can be to use the bus.

Have a Go Day will be held in Civic Square on
2 December, from 11am.

The event is subject to fine weather and will be cancelled if there is rain.