Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey and Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister Edwin Poots have launched this year’s Access and Inclusion Programme at Greenvale Leisure Centre in Magherafelt.
The Programme provides capital grant funding, through local councils and the Museums Council, aimed at promoting a more inclusive society by enabling disabled people to participate more fully in arts, cultural and active recreation activities.
The Department for Communities has provided £324,000 to the programme with a further contribution of £300,000 from the Department for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs.
The Programme provides grants of up to £30,000 towards both physical improvements at facilities and works that will enhance the experience on offer to people with disabilities.
Launching this year’s Programme, Minister Hargey, said:
“People with a disability are amongst the most marginalised in our society and have limited opportunities to participate in activities that many of us take for granted.
“One of my Department’s key strategic priorities is addressing inequality and disadvantage and this Programme will help to remove the barriers that previously prevented their participation in arts, culture and active recreation activities.
“I welcome the collaborative approach by my Department, DAERA, local councils, the Museums Council and the disability sector in delivering positive outcomes for citizens and communities.”
DAERA Minister, Edwin Poots said:
“I am delighted to be able to support the Access and Inclusion Programme which will help improve the lives of people with a disability by allowing them to enjoy many of the activities that able-bodied people take for granted.
“My Department, through the Tackling Rural Poverty and Social Isolation Fund (TRPSI) is working hard with other Departments, agencies and local councils to address isolation issues and access for the disabled is one of these areas where there are clear inequalities. This Programme is an excellent example of collaborative working to improve the lives of our citizens.”
In 2021/22, Greenvale Leisure Centre received a grant from the Access and Inclusion Programme of £27,000 towards the installation of a Pool Pod hoist system with an aquatic wheelchair that will increase accessibility to both the main and learner pools for users with a disability.
Caption: Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey and Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister Edwin Poots at Greenvale Leisure Centre in Magherafelt to launch this year's Access and Inclusion Programme. The Ministers are pictured by a Pool Pod hoist system with an aquatic wheelchair that increases accessibility to pools for users with a disability.
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