Every child should be able to play on the playground. But children with disabilities don't always have that right because the equipment isn't always accessible. Naomi Gwynne, an eight-year-old in Scotland, is calling on her local park — and parks around the world — to do better, The Huffington Post reports.
When Naomi's family visited a new park, her twin Isaac wasn't able to go on the swings. Isaac and Naomi have autism, and Isaac also has learning difficulties, neurofibromatosis type 1, and impaired vision. So, she wrote a letter asking the people who run the park to fix this.
"Dear park builders," it reads, "I love the new park, but please, could you make a disabled swing for it? Isaac, my twin brother, is too big for a baby swing and can't hold on to the bars of the grown-up swings. His favorite thing is a swing, and we are both sad. Why did you forget about him? I have drawn a swing he would like. Thank you." Sure enough, the note includes an illustration of a swing.
To ensure the message found its way to the "park builders," the twins' mom Miriam Gwynne shared a picture of it on Twitter. The South Lanarkshire Council caught notice of it, letting her know they'd figure something out — and they did.
"Following the heartfelt letter from Naomi and a review of provision in surrounding play parks, we have been able to source a seat which we think may be suitable for Isaac and are looking to have it installed as soon as possible," the council's head of service for facilities, waste, and grounds services Alistair McKinnon told the BBC.
This isn't the first time kids have helped create more inclusive playgrounds. Kids in Michigan have raised nearly $20,000 on GoFundMe to get equipment for their classmate with cerebral palsy at their school, and it's already partially installed.
Hopefully, as more kids and adults raise awareness of this issue, parks and playgrounds all kids can use will become the norm.
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