House debates

Monday, 7 December 2020

Statements by Members

Play for All Australia

1:34 pm

Photo of Jason FalinskiJason Falinski (Mackellar, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

I rise today to both acknowledge and commend the work of Play for All Australia, which has made play an accessible, inclusive and enjoyable experience for many of the children on our Northern Beaches. Play for All is a social enterprise of worthy purpose; its mission statement declares its sense of equality: to help build a world of play and belonging for all—and to do so cost-effectively, sustainably and innovatively.

Caroline Ghatt, Timothy Smith and Gemma Hoffman identified a need within their community when a number of playgrounds were to be installed on the Northern Beaches in 2016. Though the playgrounds appeared to be accessible enough on paper, they fell short of being truly inclusive for kids for all abilities—thus Play for All was established by co-founders Ghatt, Smith and Hoffman. They well understood that children with disabilities are vulnerable to significantly reduced participation in play and leisure. The reasons for this included physical inaccessibility, attitudinal barriers and weak social support. The trio were passionately motivated to bring about community improvement. This led Play for All to its first challenge, the Belrose Inclusive Play Spaces. A project that took nine months to complete, it involved erecting five separate inclusive playgrounds, each playground inspired by one of the five senses in order to provide an engaging sensory experience. (Time expired)