Every child has the right to leisure and play. Regardless of their age, nationality, gender, skin colour, social and religious background, physical and intellectual abilities children have the right to play and to play with others. This is backed by the United Nations’ Convention of the Right of the Child – the most widely signed UN convention ever.
When it comes to children’s playgrounds, the approach to inclusion, accessibility and usability of the playground and the equipment varies across the world. Some countries have a clear definition of good play areas for children with disabilities.
Others still consider accessibility for wheel chair users the main issue. The Americans with Disabilities’ Act Accessibility Guidelines for Play Areas specifies accessible routing as well as accessible products and is fundamental in KOMPAN’s approach to product design.
The United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities recommends a universal design approach. The convention has been signed by the majority of countries over the last two years.
Contrary to previous perceptions of accessibility as the main issue, the universal design approach has its emphasis on usability for all, on their individual terms. The purpose of the Convention is “to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities, and to promote respect for their inherent dignity”. The way for this approach was paved by among others the World Health Organisation’s ICF (International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health) in 2001. This document clearly states that no person is handicapped just lacking in particular aids. The ICF discusses the inclusion of all users.
KOMPAN’s history with universal design To KOMPAN, working with universal design is part of our philosophy and history: The KOMPAN Homo Ludens, the playful human being, expresses our belief that every human being is unique and valuable. KOMPAN has always fostered a philosophy of inclusion. The vast majority of KOMPAN designs are made so that all users can benefit from the play equipment on their individual terms. KOMPAN also has a small range of special equipment to be used when needed.
Read full paper on inclusive play and play for all with the above link
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