Step Up for Accessibility

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Step Up for Accessibility

Cashel Community School, Tipperary

Step Up for Accessibility at the Kilkenny Speak Out in 2020

The Social Issue

This team of passionate innovators from Cashel Community aimed to promote inclusion and protect the rights of people with disabilities by combatting the misuse of disabled parking spaces in their town. They started with the goal to raise awareness about the issue, however they quickly they realised they could do more than just raise awareness, they could tackle the issue themselves through the development of an innovative prototype alarm sensor.

The Idea

'Step Up for Accessibility' project team began with working on a prototype whereby an alarm sounds if someone without a blue badge parks in a disabled space. The prototype uses an LDR (light dependent resistor) and a buzzer. When a car drives onto the car space it will be picked up by the LDR and the circuit will then send the current to the buzzer. The team worked with their engineering department to create the design and source the materials and hope to develop this further by including an audio message within the alarm. In this way they hoped to further UN Sustainable Development Goal 10: "Reduce inequality within and among countries".


We are raising more awareness about disability parking spaces to improve our local area making it less stressful for them to find parking. We hope our innovative prototype will also convince people not to misuse this parking space.

Step Up For Accessibility Team Member

The Impact

The prototype is currently with their local council where it is being considered as a joint development. The team are in consultation with the ‘Head of Garda National Roads Policing Bureau’ to attend the launch of the prototype and talk about enforcing penalty points and tickets for the misuse of disabled parking spaces. Future plans include organising a ‘Back In 5’ campaign with a representative from the HSE. As well as creating a YouTube clip, they also intend on contacting local radio stations to talk about this issue and plan to ask local primary schools to display posters to raise awareness. A highlight of the team's journey was when, in the final of the Young Social Innovators Ireland Awards, they won the Gold Award 2020.

Team members with Principal John Gallagher, Award Presenter Dayl Cronin and YSI Guide Caitriona Ryan
Team members with Principal John Gallagher, Award Presenter Dayl Cronin and YSI Guide Caitriona Ryan