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For 30 years, Handi Cap Evasion (HCE), a non-profit association created in the Hautes-Alpes, has made it possible for able-bodied persons to share hiking activities with physically disabled persons, travelling along mountain hiking trails thanks to an all-terrain wheelchair: the “Joëlette” mobile chair, invented in 1988 by the mountain guide Joël Claudel.
HCE offers mountain hikes to groups of 20 persons, including 1 or 2 persons with a sensory disability and 4 disabled people with reduced mobility, who can then use the “Joëlette”. This special all-terrain one-wheeled mobile chair with front and rear long handles, suspension and a braking system fits all types of disabilities (a special shell can even be fixed on the chair). Conducted by volunteer guides front and back, the single-wheel “Joëlette” mobile chair can easily negotiates any trails, including the steepest ones.
The association offers two types of activities:
– One- or two-day trips, on weekends, organised by local offices.
– Stays of one week or more, in the main French mountain ranges, but also abroad (Morocco, Madagascar, Peru, Nepal).
The Michelin Corporate Foundation supports the HCE association, which also trains many people to handle the “Joëlette” mobile chair, since it is now used by other associations as well as by families.
Learn more about Handi Cap Evasion (HCE)