Can you help us to use new technologies for even bolder wheelchair design and provision? Get in touch...

Our wheelchairs have changed the way disabled people in the developing world access assistive technology.

But as technology evolves, we’re thinking even more boldly about wheelchair design and provision. Can you help us turn our ambition into reality?

Introducing Motivation InnovATe

We are all different shapes and sizes. We live, work, study and play in different environments. One size doesn’t fit all. That’s why Motivation wheelchairs are always adjustable.

But what if we could make a wheelchair that’s tailored to the user’s individual needs?

Motivation InnovATe uses 3D printing to create made-to-measure wheelchairs that are locally produced.

Our designers, engineers and clinicians are trialling a new digital system in Kenya to produce a bespoke backrest and wheelchair frame for individual wheelchair users. Clinically rigorous, user-centred, sustainable and designed for scale - Motivation InnovATe aims to transform how wheelchairs are provided to people throughout the developing world.

Support Motivation InnovATe

The Motivation InnovATe project is dependent on future funding. 

We’ve already secured funding to initiate our project but we need to raise a further £88,000 by the end of 2019 so we can complete phase one.  

If you would like to learn how you can support Motivation InnovATe, please contact Laura Salisbury.

How does it work?

It works in four simple steps:

  1. A clinician uses our digital tool to measure and record the support needs of a wheelchair user
  2. These measurements are entered into our special software that automatically generates a custom design for a wheelchair frame and accompanying seat
  3. Parts of the wheelchair frame and the seating are 3D printed
  4. Everything is assembled by engineers - using locally sourced tubing and components – then fitted to the wheelchair user.

User-centred, clinically-rigorous

Motivation InnovATe puts the user and clinician at the heart of the process from the outset. This is crucial for creating the ideal supportive seating position, which is essential for the user’s support, comfort and good health.

The system is informed by the knowledge of our clinicians and technicians, making it easy for our service partners to create custom designs.

We also understand the importance of wheelchair users being empowered to choose what they want from their assistive technology.

What seating position do they prefer? How can their wheelchair suit their lifestyle? Giving choice to the user is vital for their dignity and confidence.

Being sustainable

We’re committed to improving access to appropriate wheelchairs through local production. Motivation InnovATe aims to put technology, investment and skills back into the hands of local manufacturers and clinicians.

Why is this important? Supply of wheelchairs to developing countries is highly dependent on donors, which means it can be intermittent and unreliable.

Importing conditions are becoming trickier throughout developing countries, too, as governments aim to boost home production over foreign goods.

Our project design focuses on locally sourcing as many tools and parts as possible, whether that’s 3D printers, steel tubes or nuts and bolts.

We’re also working with staff at an existing local service provider – BethanyKids – to partner on the project delivery in Kenya. We’ll be providing training on the digital systems and supporting staff as they produce their first bespoke wheelchairs.

Working towards worldwide change

Motivation InnovATe is part of AT2030, a global programme delivered by the Global Disability Innovation Hub and will inform the global work of the ATscale partnership.

With an injection of funding from the UK Government’s Department for International Development, AT2030 will test new technologies or services, or examine evidence of what works best in the provision of assistive technology (AT). Collectively the AT2030 projects will aim to reach over three million disabled people.

#MotivationInnovATe #ATchangedmylife

Motivation InnovATe is part-funded with UK aid from the UK government through the AT2030 programme.