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Your Stories :: Tahir Tariq, 19, university student, Slough

I have always been keen to pursue further education, despite my disabilities, and in September last year I applied for and secured a place to study sociology at Brunell University.

Having suffered from cerebral palsy all my life, I have often had trouble with mobility and maintaining an independent lifestyle without relying on friends and family. I have five siblings and my parents are often very busy with us all so unable to drive me to and from my classes.

For many years I was using black taxis which could accommodate my manual wheelchair but not my electric one. This meant I was reliant on my classmates to push me around whilst at school and university.

Through my contacts at the University I discovered a specialist service through Adapted Vehicle Hire (AVH) which would allow me to take control of my own travel needs, save money for my family and receive a professional and efficient service.

Since discovering the AVH Car and Driver service in January, I have been using it to travel to and from university and I cannot recommend it enough. The service is extremely efficient and I find it really comforting to have a regular driver. I get on well with my driver and he is always there on time and when I have said. Unlike some of my friends at university I am never having to linger outside to be picked up – my chauffeur is always there ready and waiting!

No matter what special requirements I request, AVH is always able to accommodate my needs and provide a service that I have not experienced with other rental companies. My taxis were also proving fairly expensive for my parents whereas I can now pay for transport using my disabled student allowance.

For me, attending university is all about maintaining independence and, with the help of this service, going to University has certainly allowed me to do that.