Ford’s self-driving vehicle delivering food to seniors will feature teen’s art on the sides – Detroit Free Press

Ford’s self-driving vehicle delivering food to seniors will feature teen’s art on the sides – Detroit Free Press

Happiness and excitement were two things that you could see on student Brooke Snow’s face when she saw a new autonomous vehicle parked outside the school she attends in Detroit on Monday. 

  The image on the vehicle’s sides showed several people standing next to each other, representing different abilities, cultures and races. 

“I wanted to portray people from different backgrounds — like everybody,” said Brooke, 16, who designed the artwork. “It’s never just one type of person. There’s always somebody else that doesn’t fit in the box.”

The self-driving vehicle, which also is an electric vehicle with a top speed of 25 mph, will be used  to deliver 10,000 pounds of fresh food over  six months  to mobility-challenged seniors who live  at Rio Vista Detroit Co-Op Apartments in southwest Detroit. The  vehicle will deliver of about 10 totes worth of food twice a month to assist about 20 residents. 

The food delivery program, a pilot, is a partnership between Ford Motor Co. and the Ford Motor Company Fund. The autonomous vehicle will be operated by the Ford future tech autonomous vehicle team. 

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Residents at Rio Vista already take part in the Ford Resource and Engagement Center On the Go program, which was launched early this year  with the help of the Ford Fund and Gleaners Community Food Bank. Through that partnership, 2.4 million pounds of food  have been delivered. But now seniors’ access to food will double with the use of the free shuttle. 

“We’re constantly thinking about how to expand our reach in communities for those who don’t have access to the most basic goods, like groceries or warm meals,” Joe Provenzano, mobility director, Ford Motor Company Fund, said in a news release. “Bringing Ford’s mobility expertise together with local collaborations allows us to create innovative solutions that make communities stronger and people’s lives better.”

Brooke stood beside her parents, Kellee Johnson and Booker Snow, on Monday as a presentation was given outside the Detroit School of Arts. Brookeis a 12th grader at the school.

“I feel like it’s been a long journey,” Brooke said. “It was hard to imagine seeing it on the (vehicle). But seeing it, it’s like, oh my gosh, I did this.”  

Ford reached out to the Detroit School of Arts to offer the design opportunity to students. Brooke’s  artwork was chosen out of a few students who submitted a sketch. 

“I can’t express just how amazed we were when we got the …….