On the occasion of the Freiwilligentag 2016 (September 17th), organised by the MRN GmbH to realize charitable projects based on volunteer engagement, the CAP4Access team from GIScience group of Heidelberg university contributed by leading a Wheelmap mapping event at Heidelberg. Wheelmap.org is a map for finding wheelchair accessible places and it is run by one of our CAP4Access project parnters, the nonprofit organization Sozialhelden e.V.. The map is based on OpenStreetMap and works similar to Wikipedia which means that anyone can contribute and mark public places around the world according to their wheelchair accessibility.
For the mapping event, a total number of 32 volunteers, including the whole under-17 soccer team of SG Heidelberg-Kirchheim, performed mobile mapping using the Wheelmap App on their smartphones. Before the mapping started, the participiants were taught the Wheelmap traffic light system, a simple and easy to understand way to rate the accessibility of public places („green“ = fully, „orange“ = partially, „red“ = not and „grey“ = unknown wheelchair accessible). After that, the volunteers where divided into groups of 2-4 and chose parts of town that had many unmarked places.
Overall, a total number of 150 public places were marked by volunteers during the mapping event (cf. figures below). Additionally more than 100 already marked places were checked for their up-to-dateness.
In sum, this mapping event was a great success! We would like to thank all of the volunteers for their social engagement and the team of the FreiwilligenAgentur Heidelberg for supporting our project within the framework of the Freiwilligentag 2016. Furthermore we would like to thank the nonprofit organisation Anpfiff ins Leben e.V. for connecting the CAP4Access team with the SG Heidelberg-Kircheim.