“As all of us who can see, we have opportunities in every playground to learn how to grow, to develop our mobility. And so, giving them the same opportunity because every child has the right to play,” said Drew Dunphy, co-director of the NC State chapter of Freedom by Design, an architectural community service program.
The new outdoor learning center will feature a sensory wall, swing, chimes and other accessible equipment that appeals to the non-visual senses.
“We really focused on having a space for the students to not be overwhelmed and having more of an inviting space for them to enjoy residing,” said Erin Craven, Wall Project Manager. sensory for initiative. “I think it’s important because it improves student life, and it gets them more outdoors and comfortable in more active areas while also feeling more safe and isolated.”
Most of the equipment will be made by NC State students in partnership with architect Andy Osterlund and construction manager Logan McClure.
The center will replace an existing play area without facilities for the visually impaired.
The project further gives involved NC State students the opportunity to gain real-world design experience while learning from representatives of the Governor Morehead School and members of the visually impaired community.
“I think diversity inclusivity is a big part of design. And so I think that’s really great. And that’s kept me very involved in this project and I’m excited to see where it’s going” , said Brooklyn Scotto, co-director of the NC State chapter of Freedom by design.
According to Governor Morehead School Principal Matthew Mescall, this partnership between the two schools helps to show care.
“We challenge our students to be global citizens and to be involved with the State of North Carolina and various partners,” Mescall said. “It shows that we’re part of the community and they care and we care. And so it’s just about bringing that community together to make things happen for our students and then for the next generation as well.”
The team continues to make efforts to raise funds to carry out the project and still needs more donations.
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