Helps People With Disabilities
... It all started when I saw a man in a wheelchair attempt to open a very heavy door at a store. The door didn't have an automatic push button to open the door, and the man struggled to get through the door...
Hi! My name is Alexander and I'm 12 years old. I love helping people and I'm excited to tell you about the app I am developing, called Ability App, that will help people with disabilities navigate public spaces, and find safe, reliable services and employment.
I would like to thank all of you who have donated to help me start developing Ability App. I'm looking for additional financial support to continue to develop and maintain Ability App.
As you can imagine, and as I have come to find out, developing an app of this caliber can be very expensive. Several incredible people have volunteered to help along the way, but I still require funding for development/hosting/maintenance costs that are not covered by volunteer support.
Your support will enable me to continue to develop and operate Ability App after its initial launch. My friend Ellen Degeneres and the great people at Shutterfly were extremely generous in helping with an incredible donation of $25,000! This donation, along with many kind donations from all of you here on gofundme, have taken Ability App from just a dream to a near reality! Thank you for your continued support!!
Check out my latest update!
In addition to looking for additional financial support to continue to develop and maintain Ability App, I'm also looking for volunteers to help provide information on accessibility features in their hometowns. These volunteers are called Ability Ambassadors.
Becoming an Ability Ambassador is fun and easy.
It is a great way to give back to your neighbors within your community. As an Ability Ambassador, you simply let others know about accessibility friendly features that you find throughout your day at various public spaces. Any feedback is appreciated, and will provide others with incredibly valuable information that will lead to a much higher quality of life for so many! Together we can make this world a better place for everyone! Please join us today!
To Become An Ability Ambassador, Click Here.
Thank you to NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, Joe Fryer and Savannah Guthrie for the great story and for helping raising awareness about accessibility issues:
More about the Ability App:
The goal of Ability App is to improve the lives of all people with disabilities by giving them the resources to make informed decisions. Ability App will help people with disabilities and their caregivers navigate public spaces and find services and employment opportunities. Disability friendly features at specific locations will be listed like wheelchair ramps, Braille signs and menus, service animal relief locations, wheelchair friendly restaurant seating and more. Plus, services like in-home care, grocery delivery, transportation, and occupational therapy. Employment opportunities, specifically for people with disabilities, will also be listed on Ability App .
A lot of people ask me how I thought of this app idea. It all started when I saw a man in a wheelchair attempt to open a very heavy door at a store. The door didn't have an automatic push button to open the door. As the man struggled to get through the door, I wondered if there was an app that could have told him, before he left his house, about the features available at this and other stores around the area. After doing some research, I wasn't able to find any such app. So, I decided that I would create the app to assist disabled people in finding the features at various locations that could meet their needs.
I have been fortunate enough to be recognized by many great individuals and organizations, and receive many State and National awards for my app idea, including becoming the National Grand Champion for I Cubed, a National student invention competition.
I also received 1st Place for the AT&T/Imagination Foundation Inventor's Challenge.
I Was The Idaho State Merit Winner for the Discovery Channel/3M Young Scientist Challenge.
Here is an interview from my appearance on the T.D. Jakes Show where I explain Ability App:
I was invited to present my idea at Web Summit in Dublin, Ireland last year to over 40,000 people in attendance, including many top minds in business and technology.
As the youngest entrepreneur at Web Summit, I was interviewed by and featured in many broadcast news programs and print publications including Sky News, The Irish Times, and the Irish Tech News.
Ability App has been featured in many other National and International publications including the Miami Herald, The Washington Times and Platinum Business Magazine.
Recently, I was invited to present Ability App on the T.D. Jakes show.
I will continue to work hard and spread the word about developing this app so that it can help people with disabilities. With your support, we can help so many people find employment, services and facilities that give abilities!
My goal is to have every business in America listed on Ability App, with all of the disability friendly employment, services and features available!
I know that I'm only 12 years old, and you may find it hard to take me seriously, but I hope that I have shown you above that I'm committed to making this App a reality to serve people with disabilities and their caregivers! I have a working prototype and I'm seeking funding to finish building, and continue operating the app.
How the app works:
The idea is simple. To create an app to be used by people with disabilities to help them navigate the world away from home. Shopping, dining, entertainment, services, transportation and more. The simple to use app can be accessed for free on any computer or handheld device.
Step 1: Home Page
Choose the type of service or business by clicking on an item, by using the search bar up top or by using the voice activated system (also compatible with eye tracking software- for those who do not have use of their limbs or voice).
Step 2: Employment, Services & Features Page
Select specific disability friendly employment and services like grocery delivery, occupational therapy, transportation, mobility, etc. Or you can also select disability friendly features like wheelchair ramps, Braille menus, elevators, etc.
Step 3: Business Listing Page
This page will show you the business listings for your search. It will show the phone #, address, directions, and more. It will also show the disability friendly services features available in the area you select. Customers can write reviews, upload videos, add comments, share opinions and photos of the business. Business owners can also update their information to keep it current. Service providers will go through a rigorous certification process and background check before they will be certified and posted in the app.
I have been working hard to spread the word about Ability App, and what we can all do big and small to make this world more accessible for people with disabilities.
Here I am speaking to the Univesity of Idaho Computer Science Faculty and Students:
And in this photo I'm speaking to a group of teachers:
Photo by Kathy Plonka, Spokesman Review
Here I am speaking to a group of students at the University of Idaho.
Here I am speaking to the Washington State Elections Conference about creating accessibility to polling places.
THANK YOU for taking the time to learn about my app. I look forward to launching this app and helping so many people!
ABILITY APP IN THE NEWS
Articles on Ability App have been featured with these news organizations:
Coeur d'Alene Press
The Washington Times
Please visit AbilityApp.org for more information.
Can you think of any additional disability friendly features that you would like to see on the app? Please post your comments on our Facebook page ( https://www.facebook.com/abilityapp), if you would like to add your comments or suggestions! Thank you!
PLEASE!!! HIT THE SHARE OR TWEET BUTTON AT THE TOP OF THIS PAGE TO HELP US SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT ABILITY APP! WE NEED YOUR HELP TO LET OTHERS KNOW ABOUT THIS LIFE CHANGING APP!!! THANK YOU!!!!!
I’m very excited to be featured as a GoFundMe Kid Hero, along with many other kids who are doing great things around the world: https://www.gofundme.com/cause/kid-heroes/story
I’m working really hard trying to get Ability App up and running! Thank you for your support in building this life changing app! Please SHARE my campaign!
I look forward to launching Ability App and helping so many people with disabilities!
God Bless you for the gift you are giving to the Disability ( Special Abilities ) Community. I hope that Ellen and her staff can assist you with some Grant writing and becoming a 501C. From the bottom of my heart I Thank You for making others lives, such as myself, and several of my family members, so much better. I will never forget the call from my brother years ago, ( he was a quad ), I could hear the happiness through the phone. He had taken a shower for the 1st time in 8 years. The hotel they stayed in had a Roll in shower, and even provided a chair he could use in it. I had over looked the fact that he had not had this simple pleasure, we take for granted since his accident. Your app. Will bring so much comfort and happiness to others. You continue to strive to change the world for the better. You truly are a Angel here on Earth.
Alexander I saw the video of you on "Ellen" and had to reach out to you. You have the heart of a lion and I've been in tears watching. Not only am I personally involved with people who have disabilities, but due to illness and then a fall I use a rollator and a walker for stability when walking. I have a wheelchair from when I helped a woman with MS many years ago and have used that to attend events in large venues. You are brilliant, kind, and so mature to think of how to help so many people. Until somebody has a disability or has someone close to them who does there isn't necessarily thought or projection about accessibility into public places. I also have to find out about people's homes such as steps, railings, etc. You've touched my heart today! Sheri Cohen..........Maryland
I wish this would work for the UK too. I expect that will be out of the question? I'm amazed at your own abilities, Alexander, you're a smart kid
I'd love for this app to be available in the uk. For anyone wondering why this page is still up after the donation Ellen made, projects like this need lots more investment to develop, expand and keep the service free for those who need it.
Alex, I saw you on Ellen and had to find a way to reach you! My Dad has been in a wheelchair for 16 years due to MS. I cannot tell you how many countless hours our family has spent trying to find out if a restaurant or if the places we want to visit on a vacation are handicap accessible. We always want my Dad to be able to experience as much as he can but we are sometimes limited just due to the fact that we are not sure if they are truly handicap accessible. Your app is such a wonderful thing and will help so many people! Thank you for all of your hard work and I cannot wait to see what your future holds, your young mind is such an inspiration. You will do amazing things!!
Alex I just saw your story on NBC news and I'm so excited for your idea. I'm sure you have a long list already, but one thing you might add to the app is AED, so people who have heart issues know what establishments and hotels have an AED at their location and trained staff who know how to use them. Keep up the great work!!!!!
You are awesome
So Clever boy, i love the idea. I Wishing you much success!