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The Road to Independence

By eanderson

November 28, 2023

Thank You Mark and Tricia Whitehouse!

Giving Tuesday

Do you remember the first time you got behind the wheel of a car? That feeling of independence, the ability to go anywhere? Perhaps you remember the sense of accomplishment you had the day you acquired your first driver’s license.

It’s a pleasure and a privilege to drive. For many people with significant mobility or learning disabilities, that day is not at all assured.

Back in 1973, a driving instructor named Mark Whitehouse made it his mission to provide adaptive driving instruction to people with disabilities in Massachusetts (and later Rhode Island and New Hampshire). He taught for many years, committed to creating opportunities for people with disabilities to get to work, enjoy a social life, and be part of the community. Then in 1986, Mark and his wife Tricia stepped it up a notch. They started their own driving instruction company: Adaptive Driving Program, Inc.

Adaptive Driving Program was the only driving school in New England founded to serve individuals with disabilities exclusively. The team at Adaptive Driving Program, Inc. took every driver under their wings. They built their students’ confidence as they helped them master the skills necessary to drive safely. Some people needed only a few lessons, and others required dozens tailored to their individual needs. Not everyone who tried was successful, but the team gave each an opportunity to learn and have experience behind the wheel. Over almost 35 years, the Whitehouses and their instructors assisted more than 11,000 individuals with varying types of physical and cognitive disabilities to learn to drive, some using complex vehicle adaptations and some with none.

The Whitehouses were ever-present figures at many disability organization events. They also financially supported many of these organizations over 50 years.

Recently, Mark and Tricia made a very generous donation to support the work of the REquipment Durable Medical Equipment & Assistive Technology Reuse Program, Inc.

They made this gift because, “DME is not a luxury, but a necessity and REquipment has a great record of getting equipment to those who need it.”

Thank you, Mark and Tricia for your many years of service and support to the disability community and for facilitating the independence of so many through driving. Your work and your lives are inspiring.

Join Mark and Tricia in supporting REquipment, Inc.

$300 replaces batteries in a power wheelchair.
$60 buys a pair of manual wheelchair armrests.
$13 buys a gallon of Simple Green disinfectant.
Every gift makes a difference!

Make a financial gift to REquipment, Inc.

An older man smiling in the sunshine holds up a paper coffee cup with a donut design.
Happily retired, Mark Whitehouse toasts REquipment, Inc.