The All Abilities Play Space is a big project, based on a big idea: to bring people of all ages and abilities together through play.
The Play Space is unlike anything Western Australia has ever seen. It will boast play equipment for children and adults of all ages and abilities and includes equipment that teenagers, adults and older people can exercise and play on.
Initiated by four local Rotary clubs, the project is a collaboration between Rotary and local government, and has some fantastic supporters, including Lotterywest, Inclusion WA, Australia’s Bridge and Wood and Grieve Engineers, who are donating their services free of charge.
Cricket legend Justin Langer has also thrown his support behind the project, as has the Hon Julie Bishop, Federal Member for Curtin and Minister for Foreign Affairs.
The idea of the All Abilities Play Space is to build a space that’s suitable for everyone in Perth – kids obviously, but also parents, teenagers, older people and people with disabilities.
Most parents will be able to relate to sitting on the sidelines of a playground and just watching their kids play – it can get a bit boring at times!
Sometimes the equipment isn’t even built for anyone over 12 years old so teenagers can’t use it.
This playground will be different in that adults can get on the equipment, and nearly all of it will be accessible for people with a disability.
There will also be lots of things for older people to have a go on too, so they can get involved, have fun and get fit.
After all, play is beneficial to everybody and all-inclusive play means everybody, including children with disabilities, teenagers, carers and seniors. It will be a beacon of accessibility and inclusion, catering to everyone in the Perth community – research tells us that play is not just for kids.
Designed by award-winning inclusive designer and architect, Fiona Robbé – who has described the site as “the best playground site in Australia” – the All Abilities Play Space will cover 10,000 square metres on the Nedlands foreshore. The existing greenspace and trees will be included in the design, making the space a shady sanctuary during Perth’s hot summers.
“The best playground site in Australia” Fiona Robbé
Once completed, the play space will include sand and water play, sensory walkways, music play, spinning, rocking, decks and slides, a flying fox, perimeter fencing, swings, agility and motor skills practice, accessible picnic areas, a community garden and kitchen, exercise equipment, sports and games areas and much more.
Rotary’s community fundraising appeal for the All Abilities Play Space has recently been launched and community support for the project is needed.
Rotary has already raised around $750,000 from WA businesses and secured a Lotterywest grant of $750,000. A further $2.5 million is necessary to complete the $4 million dollar facility over four stages.
Construction of stage one is scheduled to commence in late 2016.
The All Abilities Play Space is for everyone and that sense of ownership also applies to the community appeal, where everyone can support the project and take pride in being involved in something that benefits the whole community.
To donate visit www.inclusionwa.org.au or to find out more information, visit http://www.nedlands.wa.gov.au/all-abilities-play-space.