Playgrounds for all

The long summer evenings are a great time to get the kids into the playgrounds. Well, nice if you can get to them, or use the swings or jungle gym. Or know what's available. Problem is that many playgrounds aren't accessible to kids with mobility or sensory impairments. Luckily, there's an increasing awareness of what it takes to make playgrounds, and playground equipment user friendly to everyone. That's thanks to inclusive play experts Fiona Robbe and Kate Bishop. They visited New Zealand recently, courtesy of Playground People.

Landscape architect Fiona Robbe.
Landscape architect Fiona Robbe

2. Inclusive playgrounds specialist, Dr Kate Bishop.
Inclusive playgrounds specialist, Dr Kate Bishop

3. Example of a disability friendly playground at Auckland’s Mission Bay.
Example of a disability friendly playground at Auckland's Mission Bay

Microsoft gets disability friendly

Mention the word 'accessible' in the disability community, and you might think buildings you can get into if you're mobility impaired, signage that's readable even if you're vision impaired, or information you can understand as an intellectually disabled person - as a few examples. But that word 'accessible' doesn't necessarily conjure up the same thoughts in other circles. So when Microsoft talks accessibility, you can be forgiven for being a tad sceptical they're actually thinking disability. Good news is, Microsoft is. And, they've got a chief accessibility officer to boot. He's Rob Sinclair, and he visited these shores recently. I caught up with Rob Sinclair during his time here.