Ford Unveils Pilot Mobility Program in South Africa
Ensly Dooms from Ford Southern Africa and Paula Barnard, ND of World Vision SA at the official handover of the Ford Rangers in Soweto, Johannesburg. Photo: Ford
A new Ford Motor Company pilot program aims to enhance mobility health services in rural areas of South Africa and Nigeria.
Ford Project Better World brings together multiple organizations such as World Vision South Africa, and social entrepreneurs to deliver health education, medication, nutrition and basic services to thousands of underserved people in remote areas. The services will be accessed using enhanced mobility and connectivity technologies from Ford vehicles, according to the automaker.
Two modified Ford Rangers will work as mobile clinics to deliver health services, dispense medication for chronic conditions, and monitor the growth of children in South Africa. The information gathered will aid agencies in tracking the health of children and help with protective services. Each truck is equipped with connectivity technologies including a dual-battery management system that powers a video projector, mobile refrigerator, tablet computer and other equipment to enable child healthcare, protection and gender-based violence awareness campaigns, according to the automaker.
In Nigeria, Ford said it is working with Riders for Health to strengthen health care access by training the group’s technicians to maintain their motorcycles, four-wheeled vehicles and trucks in order to deliver medical professionals and supplies to people in rural areas and extend the amount of time vehicles are in service. The vehicles will be equipped with sensors and Ford’s OpenXC technology to collect data designed to make Riders for Health work more efficiently. OpenXC technology will also help create the first accurate maps of remote areas of the West African nation.
Ford Motor Company and its philanthropic arm, Ford Fund, have worked for decades on multiple projects globally to advance human welfare; Project Better World is the latest example.
“At Ford, we are looking beyond the traditional role vehicles play in society and are aggressively pursuing solutions to address the human challenges faced around the globe,” said Bill Ford, executive chairman. “Those challenges take us to remote areas where we can use advanced vehicle and connectivity technologies to change people’s lives and make the world a better place.”