Originally published at pressroom.toyota.com. Toyota Motor North America ranked No. 10 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.
Toyota is accelerating its transformation into a mobility company by investing in emerging technologies that provide people the means to move and engage in their worlds. That means continuing to make great automobiles, but also “being of service,” by exploring universal, inclusive and accessible mobility solutions.
That’s why Toyota works with organizations like the Go Baby Go Foundation to empower toddlers across the country to live more mobile lives. Go Baby Go provides modified toy vehicles to children with mobility disabilities, using do-it-yourself tools like PVC pipes and pool noodles—all free of cost to the children’s families. These vehicles give children a chance to play and socialize with their peers more easily, explore their backyards, and move more independently around the room, which has been linked to cognitive, social, motor, language and other developmental benefits in young children.
As part of the partnership with Go Baby Go, employees from Toyota’s Kentucky plant (TMMK) ) and Production Engineering and Manufacturing Center (PEMC) gathered virtually to build and modify 100 mobile vehicles for kids, collaborating over video chat so volunteers could assemble the mini-Tundras in their homes.
“We have been self-isolating and protecting ourselves from this pandemic, and that experience of being isolated from people, this is what a lot of little kids experience every day of their lives,” said Ben Atkinson, ergonomist, vehicle assembly, and production engineering specialist with TMMK. “I think it was kind of jarring for us that there are little ones out there like this without access to mobility solutions, and everyone we talked to at Toyota said, ‘we’ve got to be involved.’”