In late 2019, in conjunction with Headway Wearside and Sunderland Parent Carer Forum, we put together a successful funding bid to Sunderland's North Area Neighbourhood Fund, securing the funding for a container and beach wheelchairs to be sited at Roker Beach. Then a global pandemic hit and progress was halted. Unfortunately, since the bid was made, costs escalated, leaving the project a shortfall of £13,500. Thanks to the fantastic support of all individuals, organisations and supporters involved we have already secured £8,500, leaving us still to raise a further £5000. The money will purchase a maintenance free, timber clad container to be sited near to the beach. It will also have the preliminary work completed to allow it to be hooked up to electricity at a later date.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
We know from our experiences at other sites, that the beach wheelchairs not only bring more locals to the beach, but also attracts people from further afield. We have met numerous people who chose to visit or holiday in the area, specifically because of the ability to access the beach. Being next to the sea and on the beach has been shown to have a positive impact on mental wellbeing, so opening that up to more people can only be a good thing! The container will be sited next to the beach enabling easy access for people who want to get onto the sand at Roker Beach and enjoy it like everyone else does. As the container will be ready to take electricity at a later date, it will enable both a hoist and powered chairs could be available there in the future.
Steps to get it done:
A 'trial' day held at Roker earlier in the year was a great success, with a huge amount of support being shown by the local community and businesses. It will increase the activity range of day centres and schools, just as we have seem in other locations. It will enable more families to be on the beach together and enjoy picnics and paddling. In general it will improve accessibility, one small step in reducing barriers.
About the space
Sunderland City Council