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Jaguar Land Rover Apprentices Develop Bespoke Steps For Disabled Young Horse Rider

Jaguar Land Rover Advanced Apprentices put their problem-solving skills to the test designing bespoke steps for a disabled young horse rider The apprentices spent 136 hours working on the project as part of Jaguar Land Rover’s successful employee volunteering programme This pilot project was identified by national charity REMAP which helps individuals affected by disability … Continued

  • Jaguar Land Rover Advanced Apprentices put their problem-solving skills to the test designing bespoke steps for a disabled young horse rider
  • The apprentices spent 136 hours working on the project as part of Jaguar Land Rover’s successful employee volunteering programme
  • This pilot project was identified by national charity REMAP which helps individuals affected by disability
  • Land Rover Ambassador and equestrian event rider Harry Meade joined the celebration event to the delight of Keeley and other young riders

Jaguar Land Rover has launched a new scheme which matches skilled employees to specific community challenges as part of its successful employee volunteering programme which sees around10,000 Jaguar Land Rover employees, a third of its UK workforce, donate over 115,000 hours on community volunteering per year.

A team of Jaguar Land Rover apprentices joined forces with Remap, a national charity which matches skilled volunteers, including engineers and technicians, with individuals affected by disability to help them develop equipment which overcome specific issues.

At the start of the project, Jaguar Land Rover 2nd year Advanced Apprentices Lauren Tolliday, Robert Wardle, Jason Brown and Alex Milner met young rider Keeley Cullen and observed her at a riding therapy session. Keeley is 8 years old and has cerebral palsy. She’s been riding since she was three and the exercise plays an important part of her physiotherapy. Keeley has always been lifted onto a horse but, during a recent inspection, the Ford Farm stables were told this could no longer happen so she would have to stop riding. Riding for the Disabled Association then approached REMAP’s Southampton branch to see if they could help find a solution.

The apprentice team worked closely with Remap to design steps, which needed to moveable and lightweight and wide enough for carer and child, to ensure they developed a solution which met the needs of Keeley and other children at the riding club. Lauren Tolliday explained, “The project was a good opportunity for us to learn new skills such as project planning management, teamwork and communication, and also make a positive impact on the lives of others. We selected materials to ensure strength and practicability and developed the idea through fabricating and testing numerous structures that met the specification. Through feedback from our managers and skilled workers we were able to select the most suitable design. Along the journey, we faced many problems such as how to make the steps mobile, welding aluminium and sourcing a non-slip surface for the steps which we overcame as a team by sharing our problem solving ideas and trial and error.”

Young rider Keeley Cullen said, “I’m so happy that the apprentices have made steps so my friends and I can continue to take part in riding lessons. I really love riding and was sad when I was told I’d have to stop doing it. Thank you to Lauren, Robert, Jason and Alex for designing and building these amazing steps, they’re so easy to use and mean my Mum won’t have to lift me anymore which has been getting really hard for her as I get older.”

Land Rover Ambassador and equestrian event rider Harry Meade joined the apprentices at the celebration event to find out more about the project. Harry commented, “The Jaguar Land Rover apprentices have done an amazing job in creating the hi-tech steps specifically for Keeley. She has to live with her disability, but the steps will enable her to do what she loves most. Horses can have an incredible effect on people’s lives, helping them overcome disability or anxiety. Seeing the thought that has gone into the project and difference it will make to Keeley’s life is wonderful.”

Jonathan Garrett, CSR Director at Jaguar Land Rover commented, “The Remap project is a great example of how community projects can capitalise on the skills and expertise of our workforce and encourage them to develop innovative design and technology solutions, which are core to our long-term business success, to solve social challenges whilst also developing their skills. The project has been a great success and we look forward to working with Remap on more projects in the future.”

Adam Rowe, CEO of Remap, commented, “This project demonstrates brilliantly how charity and business can forge a really effective partnership to support disabled people to become more independent. Remap has been thrilled by the work of the Jaguar Land Rover apprentices and we look forward to getting the next project underway!”

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