Thu Jun 6, 2019
Author: RV News Staff
Nerissa Cannon is on a mission to prove living in a wheelchair won’t stop her from enjoying the outdoors.
The nonprofit No Barriers USA and motorhome manufacturer Winnebago selected the social media influencer and blogger to travel from Iowa to Lake Tahoe, California in a wheelchair-ready Adventurer RV. She’s going to attend the No Barriers Summit, an annual event dedicated to helping people abilities see their strengths.
Cannon’s road trip is being documented through the hashtags #JourneyToTheSummit, #SummitWithUs and #WheelchairTravel, among others. She wants to show the importance of making nature and outdoor activities accessible to people of all abilities.
“When my mobility became restricted, I wasn’t sure if I would still be able to enjoy the outdoors in the same way I used to. It sent me into a terrible depression because that has always been such an important part of my life,” Cannon said. “Since getting involved with the No Barriers Summit, I’ve learned how to be creative in using what abilities I do have. I’m more active now than I ever have been.”
Cannon, her partner, Kelsom Owens, and her service dog, Cash, leave today from Winnebago’s Forest City, Iowa headquarters. After a send-off party, Cannon and crew will be traveling through six states and visiting four national parks along the way.
Their RV features one of three floorplans that have been redesigned for wheelchair accessibility. Winnebago released the new line of wheelchair-friendly models earlier this year. They now include some of the most commonly requested enhancements and can be customized to meet specific needs.
“Customers with additional mobility requirements are looking for the same freedom from home that many RV owners seek. And, in many cases, the ability to travel is much more meaningful,” Ashis Bhattacharya, vice president of strategic planning and specialty vehicles, said. “We are thrilled to support Nerissa and No Barriers in their effort to inspire people of all abilities to contribute their absolute best to the world and explore as much of it as possible.”
Once Cannon arrives, the wheelchair-accessible Winnebago will be open for tours during the June 13 to 15 summit. Tickets are are available for $100 at nobarriersusa.org/summit.
“Our collaboration with Winnebago is a natural fit,” No Barriers Executive Director and Co-Founder Dave Shurna said. “The partnership is a testament to the missions of both organizations to encourage people to break through barriers, build deeper connections with the people around them, and find joy, freedom and adventure in the outside world.”