Parents with children in wheelchairs used to have to park their kids on the sidelines to watch other kids play on the playground because their wheelchairs couldn’t navigate the wood chips, gravel, or sand on the ground. And even if their kids could somehow make it onto the playground, the equipment didn’t always accommodate the special needs of their children.
Those days may soon be over.
New all-inclusive playgrounds, like the one that was just unveiled in Independence, Missouri, this week, are popping up all over the country. These new playgrounds, suitable for all children regardless of their physical limitations and challenges, are a long overdue development.
That is the reason for this Variety KC all-inclusive $1.3 million largest-in-the-metro playground!
Located at McCoy Park in Independence, a celebratory grand opening will take place on Thursday at 3 p.m.
Independence Mayor Eileen Weir says this is a wonderful partnership between the city, businesses and charity to get something done for the children and families of the entire area.
One non-profit company involved, Unlimited Play, was founded by a mother of a child with physical challenges.
That mom, Natalie Mackay, emphasized the need for “parallel play,” which allows all children, those with disabilities and those without, to have fun side-by-side.
This park makes that happen from slides that allow children with cochlear implants to go zipping on down without the static electricity disabling their devices, to swings that make it possible for everybody to soar.
Here’s an all inclusive playground that shows disabled children interacting with non-disabled children:
This inclusive playground in Singapore launched in August of 2015:
You can look at 30 of the most impressive inclusive playgrounds from around the world here.