Pearse Doherty TD
Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson, Deputy Pearse Doherty, has described the installation of a new wheelchair-friendly swing set at the play park in Gaoth Dobhair this week as a ‘joyous occasion’ for the community, especially for children with disabilities.
The introduction of the new equipment, which was financed through grant funding secured by Údarás na Gaeltachta, comes following a proposal from the Donegal TD to make the facility more inclusive and disability friendly.
Speaking on a visit to inspect this new addition to the park, Teachta Doherty said he was absolutely delighted that children with disabilities living in Gaoth Dobhair and from the surrounding area could now also come there to play and enjoy the local play park following the installation of this new accessible swing set.
“This project was first mooted over a year ago when I was approached by parents locally who said that they’d like to see more options in the park for children with disabilities who cannot use its existing traditional play equipment.
“This led to me bringing this issue to the attention of Údarás na Gaeltachta and to request that consideration be given to making the facility more inclusive for children with disabilities as well as young people with limited or reduced mobility.
“To give credit to Údaras na Gaeltacht, they fully got behind this proposal and the authority supported an application for grant funding to purchase and install this specially designed equipment for the play park.
“After some months, I am now thrilled to finally see the swing being installed this week and is now due to open in the coming days.
“The swing is both wheelchair and pram friendly, it can be used by children with reduced mobility as well as those who cannot support themselves whilst using a traditional swing unaided.
“Every child deserves to enjoy and know the feeling of what it is like to experience the thrill of swinging on a swing.
“It is something which many of us take for granted and now, thanks to this new equipment, it is something which every child, regardless of their disability, can now also enjoy.
“For me personally, and speaking as someone whose young nephew will be one of those who will benefit from this new addition, I am absolutely honoured and delighted to have been involved with this fantastic project and to have been able to see it right through to its successful delivery.
"In my view every play ground and play facility should be disability-friendly, and I therefore call on Donegal County Council to make efforts towards making every such facility across our county both more inclusive and welcoming for every child, including those with a disability,” he said.