All Access Play, INC is a nonprofit that is seeking “Dream Makers” for the “Field of Dreams” project. With more than 30 parks and recreational facilities in Indian River county including a few dog parks, one may be inclined to declare “we don’t need any more parks”. I felt the same way until life events and circumstances opened my eyes and melted my heart. There is not one park or sports recreational facility specifically built for children and young adults with special needs. Shame on me, shame on us. As a community, we inadvertently overlooked the needs of more than 4,000 people who live amongst us. It doesn’t matter how it happened or why it happened, what matters is that we, as a community, fix it. We must stop “doing for some and start doing for all”. Everyone should have the opportunity to participate in league sports and play on a playground no matter the level of abilities The “Field of Dreams” project is needed, deserved and very much possible. We, as a community, need to be more inclusive with recreational facilities and parks. Scientifically, it’s not known why but the number of persons who are special needs seems to be increasing every year. Therefore, we must respond with something we do know and that is action We need to unite and make the “Field of Dreams” project the best gift from our community for our community, for years to come.
The entire facility will have no curbs, no steps, all handicapped accessible restrooms, pavilions and picnic tables created for wheelchair use. The surfaces of the sports areas will be poured rubber to assist those who utilize walkers and wheelchairs for mobility. The playground is for all but designed to make certain that children with limited abilities can interact and play like so many others. There will be wheelchair swings too. One of the best features will be the water splash pad play area with the availability of waterproof wheelchairs. There are many other features too, but every feature is designed with the needs of those with special abilities.
The “Field of Dreams” project is about making dreams come true. Participation and play for all. No matter the challenges this community project will overcome any and all challenges to provide a special place for special people to belong. Parents who have never had the opportunity to cheer and support their child during a league sport or parents who have watched their child not be able to play on a playground because of the lack of accessibility will have their dreams come true. This project will be the first of it’s kind ever in Indian River county. Having such a facility in our community will make us all proud. Children and young adults with special needs should and will get to participate and play. The “Field of Dreams” is about making dreams come true and with “Dream Makers” from within our community we have the opportunity to “do for ALL instead of doing for some”. Let’s make Dreams Come True. For more information on becoming a “Dream Maker” contact Julie Sharkey-Villars, Executive Director for All Access Play, INC by email: [email protected]
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