Big Dreams Universally Accessible Parks and Playgrounds is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that was created to build parks and playgrounds in our community that serve people of all ages and abilities. These parks will specifically address the needs of children and adults who are unable to use traditional play equipment due to a variety of physical and developmental disabilities.
Have you ever wondered how a child who is in a wheel chair, who is blind, who is autistic, or who has a physically disabled parent can play outside? Traditional playgrounds and parks pose major hurtles to children and adults who have these challenges. For example, a child in a wheel chair or who uses a walker can not even access the play structure at many parks because the surface around the structure is either bark or sand. Neither of these types of surfaces are conducive to rolling on. So, unfortunately these children either sit on the sidelines and watch or their parents choose to stay home rather than subject their child to another day of feeling left out and "different".
Have you ever wondered what a parent who is in a wheel chair does when they want to take their child to the park? Can you imagine having to send your small child out into a park and not be able to help them or be at the bottom of the slide to catch them because you can't get through the sand or bark?
During my research I have learned so much about what the "typical" playground is lacking and who was not being served. I really had no idea the true extent in which our parks were unintentionally excluding a huge number of children and their families. I also learned the importance of building a park that is challenging and fun for all children. There must be elements that are fun for both the child with special needs and their able-bodied family and friends.
Families need a place where they can come together and let their children play. They need to have a safe, fun, and totally inclusive outdoor space where their child can play with other children without any limitations or road blocks.
It is our dream that one day all playgrounds will be accessible and inclusive to all people. Please join us in making our dream a reality.