Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets has launched Global Giving crowdfunding campaign to raise money to build Armenia’s first inclusive playground for over 8,000 disabled children in the country.

Disabled children in Armenia  face public segregation and feel left out of society. In 2005 Government of Armenia adopted the concept of Inclusive Education. According to it, children with special needs should be educated with their peers in general classrooms, which will break the barriers that halt their integration into society. However, many of disabled children still remain in isolated environment.The inclusive playground aims to bring them back into the public eye and end the segregation.

The playground will offer disabled children an inclusive space to interact and connect with others. In turn, the interactions with these children will put them at the forefront of public discourse and raise awareness about their needs. Unlike their peers, disabled children are deprived of many opportunities.This initiative will be one of the first steps for expanding their opportunities in many spheres of society, such as education, the arts, and sports.

This playground is another important step that our society has taken in the process of integrating disabled children. Just like the project Mini Yerevan that helps visually impaired children learn how to move around the city independently, this project will give disabled kids opportunities and skills that they need in order to feel a full member of our society.

I was very happy to find out about this project, because after visiting the school for disabled children and seeing their excitement about Mini Yerevan, I understood that the only thing they need is our attention. These kid want more projects like these two, so that they will have equal opportunities to play, learn, make friends and have a normal life. These projects help them to feel “less disable” and “more able”.