Inclusive mobility is an important initiative to directly consider everyone (without reservations) in the initial stages of designing and development of transport and mobility services. Unfortunately, it has been observed that there is little or no mobility safety policies for elderly people in Africa, which should compel urban developers and transport planners to put key and special consideration during designs. This could be attributed to the unavailability of information and studies about the mobility needs, behaviors, and patterns of elderly people. It is perceived to have further hampered the safety and accessibility of mobility for the elderly people.
It is for this reasons that GreenLight Initiative in partnership with the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, and Makerere University Uganda with support from Volvo Research and Education Foundations commences the research project to determine the mobility needs of the elderly people in two Africa Cities. The inception workshop today in Abuja Nigeria kick start the research process. This workshop forms part of the research looking into “the mobility needs of the elderly”. The project aims to help policymakers and transport stakeholders make evidence-based decisions regarding these groups of road
users. To this end, we will examine current transport preferences and policies affecting the mobility of the elderly and how they impact on, and are impacted by different factors, and take a broad, multidisciplinary view of these links.
Today’s workshop will engage a set of carefully selected stakeholders – those who are affected by and have a direct interest in the mobility of the elderly and are also the gatekeepers that control access to transport resources. Additionally, today’s workshop will seek to:
- Create awareness on the proposed project on meeting the mobility needs of the elderly
- Fill information gaps identified during the project writing stage.
- Collect in-depth information on the subject by engaging various stakeholders
- Cultivate partnerships and create or join collaborative effort in understanding the travel needs of the elderly in the selected cities
- Inform and connect all actors to understand the transport modes, physical, design, economic, and social factors that are(not) responsive to the needs of the elderly.
- Achieve consensus, foster effective and interdisciplinary interactions among researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to reflect on the COVID-19 impacts, challenges and potential opportunities which would help develop sustainable and safe urban mobility after the pandemic.
We organized a similar workshop in Uganda in March 2022. The workshop afforded stakeholders the opportunity to dialogue and evaluate transport policies as it affects the elderly in Uganda. The Nigerian version of the workshop commences today.
GreenLight Initiative is nonprofit organization working to promote safety, health, environment and sustainable transportation.
Simon Patrick Obi
Executive Director, GreenLight Initiative