Some of the simplest pleasures in life, like the feeling of sand between your toes, can be not-so-simple, or not an option for people living with disabilities. But when it comes to giving back to everyone in the community, no one does it better than the guys and girls from the Surf Life Savers. Together, they make up the biggest volunteer organization in the country.
“Beaches are free, and they should be accessible to everyone,” Peter Whitty from the SLSC told us.
That’s why he and the incredible volunteers from the Burleigh Heads Mowbray Park Surf Life Saving Club make Burleigh Heads one of the most accessible beaches in Queensland.
Every weekend, the club members roll out a beach mat, stretching from hard sand to the water, suitable for all manual and electric wheelchairs, prams and walking frames. The club allows people the loan of Mobi-Chair floating wheelchair and Hippocampe beach wheelchair. While it is important to have a carer or friend to operate either chair, they are both offered free of charge.
It’s not just here on Gold Coast beaches where progress is being made: there have been some clever changes to the design of some of Brisbane’s public spaces, which in turn will help make a huge difference to accessibility around the city.