JavaScript is off. Please enable to view full site.

German grandma builds wheelchair ramps from Lego

German grandma builds wheelchair ramps from Lego

Thursday, February 20, 2020, 13:09 GMT+7
German grandma builds wheelchair ramps from Lego
Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

HANAU, Germany -- Faced with rows of inaccessible shops and cafes, wheelchair user Rita Ebel has devised a low-tech high-fun solution - ramps made of Lego.

“For me it is just about trying to sensitise the world a little bit to barrier-free travel,” Ebel said in the German town of Hanau.

She has been using a wheelchair since she was involved in a car accident 25 years ago.

“Anyone could suddenly end up in a situation that puts them in a wheelchair, like it did me,” the 62-year-old grandmother said.

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Helped by her husband, Ebel often spends two to three hours a day building the made-to-order ramps which contain several hundred of the small plastic bricks stuck together with up to eight tubes of glue.

The bright colours stand out in town centres, she said.

“Nobody just walks past a Lego ramp without taking a look. Whether it’s children who try to get the bricks out or adults who take out their mobile phones to take pictures,” she said.

Local businesses are also enthusiastic.

Rita Ebel (L), nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' and her husband Wolfgang build a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of their flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel (L), nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' and her husband Wolfgang build a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of their flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

“It’s a brilliant idea,” said Malika El Harti, who got a ramp for her hair salon.

“Everyone who walks past is happy about the ramps. Finally you can see from afar that you can get in here without any problems.”

Reliant on donations, the biggest challenge is getting hold of bricks, said Eber, as many families can’t bear to part with them.

The idea is even catching on abroad.

Ebel, who also has a part-time job, has sent ramp building instructions to Austria and Switzerland and there is interest from Spain and a school in the United States.

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' tests one of her wheelchair ramps built from donated Lego bricks in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' tests one of her wheelchair ramps built from donated Lego bricks in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' tests one of her wheelchair ramps built from donated Lego bricks in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' tests one of her wheelchair ramps built from donated Lego bricks in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' tests one of her wheelchair ramps built from donated Lego bricks in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' tests one of her wheelchair ramps built from donated Lego bricks in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel (L), nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' and her husband Wolfgang build a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of their flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel (L), nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' and her husband Wolfgang build a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of their flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Donated Lego bricks and tools needed to build a wheelchair ramp are seen in the living room of 'Lego grandma' Rita Ebel, at her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Donated Lego bricks and tools needed to build a wheelchair ramp are seen in the living room of 'Lego grandma' Rita Ebel, at her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users.  Photo: Reuters

Rita Ebel, nicknamed 'Lego grandma,' builds a wheelchair ramp from donated Lego bricks in the living room of her flat in Hanau, Germany, February 17, 2020. Picture taken February 17, 2020. Ebel started to build the ramps almost one year ago to raise awareness for handicapped people in her hometown of Hanau. Meanwhile, dozens of stores use the ramps to ease entry for wheelchair users. Photo: Reuters

Reuters

Read more

;

Photos

VIDEOS

‘Taste of Australia’ gala dinner held in Ho Chi Minh City after 2-year hiatus

Taste of Australia Gala Reception has returned to the Park Hyatt Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City's District 1 after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic

Vietnamese woman gives unconditional love to hundreds of adopted children

Despite her own immense hardship, she has taken in and cared for hundreds of orphans over the past three decades.

Vietnam’s Mekong Delta celebrates spring with ‘hat boi’ performances

The art form is so popular that it attracts people from all ages in the Mekong Delta

Vietnamese youngster travels back in time with clay miniatures

Each work is a scene caught by Dung and kept in his memories through his journeys across Vietnam

Latest news

Vietnam Q2 GDP growth quickens alongside price pressures

Vietnam's economy grew at a 7.72% annual pace in the second quarter on the back of robust exports, government data showed on Wednesday, though authorities noted challenges such as rising inflation for the second half of the year