THE construction of a new all abilities playground in Lyndhurst will mean children of all capacities can enjoy a day of play.
The Touched by Olivia Foundation was the driving force behind this project and identified the City of Casey as an area which could utilise a playground of this type.
Executive officer of the foundation Rebecca Ho said the group initially looked at doing the first project in Melbourne, but were eager to work with the City of Casey.
“Casey was one of the first communities we wanted to work in,” she said.
Ms Ho mentioned that the growing number of people in Casey was an important factor which motivated the group to design a playground of this type in the municipality.
“It is such a growth area,” she said.
“There is no other inclusive play facility and we are keen to highlight the needs of children with disabilities.”
The City of Casey Council recently announced it would fund $200,000 towards this project, and the Bank of Melbourne will also sponsor the initiative.
Last Tuesday, representatives from Touched by Olivia, as well as major Amanda Stapledon and staff from the bank met for the official announcement of the new playground at Marriott Waters Recreation Reserve. Ms Ho said the idea to build the playground in the City of Casey came about two years ago, and the group hoped that after consultation with the community, the playground would be built within the next six months.
“We want to ask the community what they want,: she said.
“We will then come back with a design to share with everyone.”
Cr Stapledon said council is thrilled to be partnering with the Touched by Olivia Foundation to establish a community inclusive play space in Casey.
This announcement comes after Cr Stapledon recently completed her walk for disability.
Ms Ho described the mayor as a ‘great champion’.
Cr Stapledon said the playground at Marriott Waters Recreation Reserve, an area of continual growth, would ensure that children of all abilities in Casey could access, enjoy and experience fun in the great outdoors.
“I am delighted that council is working to help improve the health and happiness of Casey’s families through this initiative.”
The major also said that research showed that increased participation of people with a disability, their family and carers in community life could improve personal wellbeing, community access, participation, social networks and decision making for people with a disability.
Members from the Touched by Olivia Foundation will maintain contact with the community to gain feedback as to how the playground should be designed.
The Touched by Olivia Foundation created in the wake of the death of eight-month-old Olivia Perkins, who was taken by a rare illness.
Her parent, Justine and Hohn created the foundation as a way for Olivia to continue touching the hearts of others by work undertaken by the group.
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