The Tupelo Trail for Blind Hikers is a tactile nature trail in Norwell, MA that I developed in pursuit of my Eagle Scout project with Troop 28 in Cohasset. The project received the Eagle Scout Project of the Year Award, selected from over 300 Eagle Projects in the greater Boston area.
I have met with the Perkins School for the Blind throughout the development of the trail and at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, an app that supports the experience of the trail was already in development. I have written voice narratives that will replace the braille program on the trail, and now funds are needed to safely activate the trail by providing an IoS/Android based app that can guide blind hikers and through friends across the trail. It is hoped that the app can also serve as an educational tool for local programs that support the blind.
The Perkins School for the Blind has been advising me on the technical accessibility goals for the app and it is ready to go into the next step of development. Your funds will support this app and also allow me to publicize the trail to target markets that will publicize the trail as a destination for blind hikers and their friends who are looking for a fulfilling way to experience forestry, agricultural and natural history, and the life cycle of an active vernal pool.
Funds raised will also provide resources for the development of an app that will interface with the UNiD program at the University of Hawaii, which hopes to use the app to add the Trail to accessible list created by the National Park Service to create outdoor recreational and educational resources for blind hikers and their friends.
The app is scheduled to start development on August 1, 2020 and be ready on October, 15, 2020.
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- Debra Martinez
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