On Saturday, March 8, Shane’s Inspiration held its annual Gala Celebration at the Beverly Hills Hotel Crystal Ballroom. Themed An Evening of Motown, attendees came together to help raise funds for Shane’s Inspiration and their inclusion programming in addition to celebrating three amazing champions of inclusive play.
Former Vice President of Ecuador Lenin Moreno was presented with the Inspiration Award for his work in advancing social inclusion and bringing the first inclusive playground to Ecuador. The 8,880 square-foot inclusive playground, which opened on Nov. 22, 2013, features playground equipment specifically designed to promote integration among children of all abilities.
Additionally, Universal Studios Hollywood’s Discover a Star Foundation received the Community Leadership Award for its work of providing financial assistance to neighboring nonprofits linked to children’s causes and homeless intervention, and Richard D. Kessler was honored with the Humanitarian Award for his strong community involvement and support of Shane’s Inspiration.
Congratulations to all of these champions of inclusive play!
As we mentioned last month, our partnership with Shane’s Inspiration helped us bring the first inclusive playground to Ecuador! On Friday, Nov. 22, Paúl Granda López, Mayor of Cuenca, our president, Pat Faust, and the team from Shane’s Inspiration celebrated the grand opening of the 8,880 square-foot inclusive playground. The event welcomed more than 200 children of all abilities, many who were experiencing swinging and playgrounds for the very first time in their lives!
Former Vice President Lenin Moreno, an extraordinary champion for the rights of people with disabilities, initiated the concept of the inclusive playground, inspired by his own personal journey as a paraplegic and his discovery of the healing power of laughter and play therapy.
Nearly 14 percent of children have one or more special needs ranging from autism to cerebral palsy. These kids often have troubles socializing and even playing, which is why it’s important to address various abilities on the playground. Additionally, we’re seeing an increased number of caregivers who are injured military service members and part of an aging population. Their needs are also important to consider so that entire families can come to the playground for fun and recreation.
The above reasons are why we’ve expanded our inclusive play product offerings. The new We-saw™ is a seesaw that was specifically designed to accommodate people of all abilities. It is a multi-person seesaw that is accessible, promotes social inclusion and offers a multi-generational solution. The We-saw provides a truly inclusive play experience by accommodates multiple users, and the We-saw’s walk-in seating allows for easy access and transfer for those with mobility issues. Everyone that climbs aboard the We-saw will experience a fun, user-controlled ride.
We are committed to providing play experiences for children of all abilities. With our design philosophy, which addresses the environment, the play experience and variability, and other inclusive play product innovations like the OmniSpin® spinner and Oodle® Swing, we bring children with and without disabilities together to play, learn and grow on the playground.