herald

Monday 23 October 2017

Roger is one of Dublin Bus's unsung heroes

HE'S one of the unsung heroes of the city's main bus service, with most commuters unaware that his role even exists.

But Roger Flood has worked for years to make sure that Dublin Bus users with special needs can get from A to B.

The 'Travel Assistance Scheme' from Dublin Bus is free for over 18s and it teaches people how to use the different routes, communicate efficiently with the driver and other passengers, as well making them aware of the various 
safety features available on board.

greeting

Friendly travel assistant Roger has years of experience meeting and greeting passengers who need a little extra help to take advantage of the network.

Roger told the Herald he loves his job, saying: "I am absolutely spoiled rotten, everything about my job - the people that I work with are absolutely fantastic."

One of Mr Flood's clients is Aishling Mason. The 24-year-old has recently learned how to make a journey on Dublin Bus independently, and she now travels to Enable Ireland in Dun Laoghaire and her friend's house in Monkstown.

She gave her travel assistant Roger "10 out of 10".

"I believe that if Dublin Bus served the world, Aishling would travel the world because she loves Dublin Bus," Roger said.

"Aishling has taken all the advice on board, she has gone with it.

"And, I have to say, the end product with Aishling is 
absolutely fantastic."

Roger initially meets with his clients to discuss their chosen routes in their homes, and then he meets with them as many as five additional times at various stages of their chosen routes until they are confident in carrying out the journey independently.

"Once they have the potential, we will go on and continue working with them until they are travelling independently," Mr Flood said.

"The service is available for anybody aged 18 or over.

"And it is aimed at people with disabilities, and that would be people who have 
suffered from stroke or a heart attack, wheelchair users or visually impaired, intellectual disabilities.

"Even brain Injury Ireland and Headway Ireland - I work with all the different organisations," he said.

He said it's also his job to help "people at home who would have taken sick that would have been driving all their lives and are now not used to using buses".

hnews@herald.ie

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