FEB. 15th DEADLINE: Developing Assistive Technology Make-A-Thon

Here’s an amazing event taking place on March 17-19 that you should all start thinking about. Inspired by Drew McPherson, a C-6 quadriplegic mechanical engineering student at UC Berkeley, he has worked with other engineering students for the past three years to create a club focused on developing assistive devices after seeing so many useless projects be built.

They are having a public make-a-thon where students and professional engineers will work with community members with disabilities to address unmet needs and see what they can create to make independence more of a reality.

IMPORTANT: deadline for submission of your challenge was just extended to midnight on WEDNESDAY, FEB. 15th. The person submitting the challenge will need to be present for at least part of the event and in communication prior to the event to ensure the final solution is something the person can actually use. To apply and to learn more about this event, here’s the web site or send e-mail to enabletechberkeley@gmail.com. The actual make-a-thon will be held on the campus of UC Berkeley March 17-19.

Submit a challenge you face as one of the projects they could work with you on. If there are any specific daily tasks that are really difficult or you simply can’t do, you can submit a challenge and they’ll form a team to work with you on trying to come up with a solution that you can really actually use. Or perhaps something that would improve your quality of life or recreational equipment.

They are working with Tikkun Olam Makers (TOM), an international network of communities focused on assistive technology. By working with TOM, any solutions developed here can be adapted for community members in Spain, Chile, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Israel or any other country that there is a TOM maker community.

To learn more about their 2015 event, here’s a one-minute video.

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