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Sunshine Coast beach introduces water access for people with disabilities

Sunshine Coast beach introduces water access for people with disabilities
May 1, 2017

Alexandra Headland has become the first beach on the Sunshine Coast to roll out the welcome mat to increase beach access for people with disabilities.

The inclusive addition will enable greater access to one of the Sunshine Coast’s most-loved beaches with disability matting now paving the way across the dunes to the water’s edge.

Sunshine Coast Councillors John Connolly and Jason O’Pray have worked with the Alex Surf Club and disability services over many months and were excited to officially launch last week.

Applauding the efforts of the Alex Surf Club and welcoming the opportunity to open the beach for people of all abilities, Councillor Connolly stated “so much of the community shares a love of the beach, the water and the sand. It’s a big part of why a lot of us love living here and it’s a big part of what brings us together as a community.

“It’s wonderful to share that with people of all abilities.

“Sunshine Coast Council is incredibly proud to partner with the Alex Surf Club to deliver this project.”

Councillor O’Pray praised the efforts of council officers, surf lifesavers and disability support groups who have worked to bring the project from a concept to a reality, adding “we have received so much support from the local community and we hope to be able roll this out at more beaches across the Sunshine Coast in the future.”

The matting is provided by Push Mobility Australia, and was supported with $20,000 funding from council operations and discretionary divisional funding.

Shane Hryhorec, from Push Mobility, said he was excited to see the Sunshine Coast Council deliver improved accessibility to their much-loved beaches.

Hryhorec concluding “iIt’s exciting to see the first successful beach roll out on the Sunshine Coast and we’re hoping to see more councils follow suit.”

Surf lifesavers from the Alex club will roll out the matting progressively over weekends and during peak periods during the warmer months, together with the Beach Accessible Wheelchair which available for free public use.

The combination makes the beach one of the most accessible in Queensland.

Images: Councillor Jason O’Pray and Tania Sherley at Alex Beach (top) and Shane Hryhorec from Push Mobility puts the beach’s access mats to the test (below).

Click here to contact Accessible Beaches Australia/Para Mobility via their entry in the Australasian Leisure Management Supplier Directory.

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