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Thousands Offered For Disability Innovations

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With $25,000 in prize money on the line, inventors are being challenged to tackle real-world barriers facing people with disabilities.

United Cerebral Palsy is offering up cash to anyone who can turn one of three ideas they’ve pinpointed into reality. The reward is being offered for creating a solar-powered wheelchair, a fold-up motorized wheelchair that can fit inside a typical car or a documentary focusing on the successes of people living with cerebral palsy in the 21st century.

The ideas were picked from nearly 500 that were submitted last year to the organization’s “Change My World In 1 Minute” contest. The challenge called for ideas that would “improve mobility, independence, accessibility, communication or social connections” for those with cerebral palsy.

“We’re challenging the world to bring these three innovative ideas to life and to help people living with disabilities become more independent, increase accessibility and raise awareness,” said Stephen Bennett, president and CEO of UCP. “We invite everyone, including universities, engineers, companies, inventors, hackers and makers to bring their best thinking to the contest. This is a chance to use the best of humanity’s gifts to change the lives of others.”

Entries to the contest are due March 31 and the winners — who will share in the $25,000 prize money — are expected to be announced ahead of World Cerebral Palsy Day on Sept. 2.

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