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Volunteers with Disabilities to Construct a Home Featuring Smart Home Technology for a Person who has a Disability
[May 16, 2004]

Volunteers with Disabilities to Construct a Home Featuring Smart Home Technology for a Person who has a Disability

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., May 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Volunteers with all ranges of disabilities will unite at a Birmingham homesite to build an ABILITY House for Derrick Daniels, a man who has quadriplegia. An ABILITY House is an affordable, accessible home built for a low-income family where one or more members have a disability. The ABILITY House program utilizes volunteers with disabilities during all phases of construction, emphasizing their skills and talents. The "blitz build" will kick-off on Monday, May 17, 2004 and conclude Friday, May 21, 2004.

Derrick Daniels, the future homeowner, will be the first recipient of an ABILITY House that features smart home technology that creates a barrier-free environment. BellSouth is sponsoring the home and will provide extensive telephone technology and services, including an Ameriphone electronic remote control voice activated speakerphone, talking caller ID, BellSouth deluxe caller ID service, BellSouth directory assistance exemption, BellSouth directory assistance call completion service and BellSouth(R) FastAccess(R) Internet Service.
Further increasing Daniel's independence, the ABILITY House will also include an HP Pavilion Media Center PC with a 17" flat screen monitor, an HP printer-copier-scanner all-in-one, and an HP Photosmart digital camera. HP products incorporate accessibility features, including special keystrokes which are compatible with assistive technology devices and applications.
From the PC station, Daniels will be able to operate lights, doors (Stanley Senior Technologies donated three AccessPro door automators), ceiling fans, televisions, and other appliances. Experts from BellSouth and HP will evaluate Daniels to determine what type of assistive technology will best allow him to independently use his PC. In addition to managing lights and appliances throughout his home, the assistive technology will also provide Daniels the freedom to work on his computer, browse the internet, email and complete his college assignments as he pursues a degree in Computer Science.
People with all types of disabilities (hidden and visible) are encouraged to volunteer during construction. No experience is required and all ability levels are welcome. To a volunteer, please contact David Goodwin, Volunteer Coordinator, 205-780-1234.
The ABILITY House is sponsored by BellSouth, ABILITY Magazine and Habitat Birmingham. House design prepared by Lawson State Community College Drafting & Design Technology students with David Jones, architect instructor.
Schedule for ABILITY House Build Week

Sunday, May 16, 2 p.m. - 3 p.m
Reception and Technology Demonstration
BellSouth Alabama Operations Center
3196 Highway 280 South (across street from The Summit shopping center)
Media invited to meet Derrick Daniels and view technology demonstration.

Monday, May 17 - Thursday, May 20, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
House Construction

Friday, May 21 - House Dedication Day
8 a.m. to 11 a.m. - House Construction
Noon - House Dedication followed by lunch

Directions to house site at 1420 42nd Street, Bellview Heights from downtown Birmingham: Take Interstate 20/59 SW towards Tuscaloosa, Exit #119B/Avenue I. At the next traffic light turn left and travel back under the Interstate. After turning, pass True Love Missionary Baptist Church on the right. Go straight through the traffic light, Oakland Cemetery will be on the left. Turn left at the next stop sign onto 40th St., which becomes Warrior Road. Turn right onto Avenue N. Turn left onto 42nd Street. House is on the left.
About BellSouth
BellSouth Corporation is a Fortune 100 communications company headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia and a parent company of Cingular Wireless, the nation's second largest wireless voice and data provider. Backed by award winning customer service, BellSouth offers the most comprehensive and innovative package of voice and data services available in the market. Through BellSouth AnswersSM, residential and small business customers can bundle their local and long distance service with dial up and high speed DSL Internet access, satellite television and Cingular(R) Wireless service. For businesses, BellSouth provides secure, reliable local and long distance voice and data networking solutions. BellSouth also offers online and directory advertising through BellSouth(R) and The Real Yellow Pages(R). More information about BellSouth can be found at
About the ABILITY House
The ABILITY House is the hallmark program of ABILITY Awareness, a non- profit organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of people with disabilities through housing, education, employment, media and volunteer opportunities. Created in partnership with Habitat for Humanity International, the ABILITY House was established to offer accessible, affordable housing for low-income families where one or more members have a disability. The project utilizes volunteers with disabilities during all phases of construction. The ABILITY House demonstrates the potential of every person and empowers a community with a new level of awareness. An award-winning program, it was recently honored with a Presidential Community Volunteer Award by President Bush. For more information, please visit or ABILITY Magazine supports ABILITY Awareness through financial assistance and its volunteer staffing. For more on ABILITY Magazine, a celebrity-driven publication that focuses on health, wellness and disability, please visit
About Habitat for Humanity of Greater Birmingham
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Birmingham is an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International. Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical non-profit organization that builds simple, decent, and affordable homes with low-income people in need.
BellSouth Corporation; Habitat for Humanity of Greater Birmingham

CONTACT: Terri Denard of BellSouth, +1-205-972-2984, or Romney Snyder ofABILITY Magazine, +1-949- 854-8700, Ext. 307, or Cassie Sanford of HabitatBirmingham, +1-205-780-1234, Ext. 321, +1-205-365-2409

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