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HandiHelp by Chris Stigas

Personal Bio:

Chris Stigas is a Certified RHFAC Professional.  With over 20+ years of construction knowledge as an electrician, he has gained an extensive background in architectural renderings, blue-print design and planning.  This enables him to consult at the early stages of a construction project right up to completion. Additionally, he is very familiar with AODA legislation, Building Codes and Universal Design.

rIn the Fall of 2014, he suffered a traumatic and life altering spinal cord injury that changed his body and its abilities. A C5-C6 incomplete injury limits his mobility from the chest down. As a result, he has personal first-hand knowledge of the barriers, and built environment limitations all around us.  Accessibility is not only personal to himself, but he strives to maximize independence and quality of life for seniors and war vets who face similar struggles.

His pre-injury professional experience coupled with his lived experience gives him the unique perspective of having both sides of the equation to draw on when conducting assessments and giving recommendations. It is also why he is passionate about the RHFAC program, removing barriers, and improving dignified access for goods and services in public spaces to people with accessibility needs.

The  Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility CertificationTM  (RHFAC) is a national rating system that measures and certifies the level of meaningful access of residential and commercial buildings, including public spaces and sites. My training as an RHFAC Professional lets me provide the site owner with rating to better understand the sites  physical accessibility, how it  can be  improved, and additionally, identify barriers for the sites community, customers, or employees.

Some of these benefits are:

* opportunity to gain market differentiation and a competitive advantage that are applicable to a pre-construction or existing site accessibility

* attract more diverse visitors, buyers, staff and customers

* build sustainable, inclusive spaces without costly retrofits

* be a visionary leader in equity, diversity and inclusion

* benefit everyone with improved access

With the demographics of people identifying as having a disability are currently 1:7 and moving to 1:5 (20%) over the next five years, having a meaningful accessibility plan is not only smart business - it’s the right thing to do.

Company Bio:

HandiHelp.ca is an accessibility innovation company. We focus on improving quality of life through smart, ergonomic, user-centric solutions. Our products and services are designed for people with accessibility needs, by people with accessibility needs.

The HandiHelp website:  www.HandiHelp.ca