Accessible and safe day out

Everyone should be able to participate, even if you have a physical disability. That is the principle of inclusiveness that the Zonnebloem is committed to. So when the major day attractions in the Netherlands recently wrote a protocol on how they apply the one-and-a-half-foot rule, the Zonnebloem, together with some key parties, supplemented it.

The ‘Out Together Safely’ protocol was initially intended for the larger day attractions and zoos to ensure that their guests stay within one-and-a-half metres of each other in order to have a safe day out. However, this did not sufficiently take into account people with physical disabilities.

Not obvious
Rob Verberne, project leader of the Zonnebloem Unlimited Outings project, said: “A day out is simply not something everyone can take for granted. The
Zonnebloem has been working for years to improve accessibility for people with physical disabilities. After all, everyone should be able to visit a location without being hindered by thresholds, the lack of adapted toilets, disabled parking spaces and other awkward situations. Everyone should be able to participate in this society.

Together with other advocates for people with disabilities, including the Ministry of Disability Affairs, and Jongpit, as well as experts by experience and entrepreneurs, we completed the protocol. This cooperation is very important, because this way we can also share knowledge with each other and learn from each other.

Sharing experience and knowledge
For Karin Stiksma of Joint Projects, initiator of the ‘Accessible Day Out’ action programme, that cooperation is also very important. “In our country there are many good initiatives for people with disabilities, but the cooperation and capacity to lobby is mostly lacking. That’s why it’s good that we are putting our heads together.

After all, we share the same interest: a safe and accessible day out for everyone.” As a result of this fine collaboration, the idea was born to set up a community ‘Accessible Day Out’ where all parties involved, as well as experts by experience, will have a place to share their experiences and knowledge.



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