Over the long weekend, we took the tribe to our local community’s Livvi’s Place playground in Jordan Springs. I knew two things about Livvi’s Place playgrounds – the first was that it was an all inclusive play area, and the second was it was in memory of a little girl called Olivia. But after we visited and the tribe had an absolute ball, I thought I’d better do some more research on this fantastic initiative and share it here with you all.
Livvi’s Place is an all inclusive play area – what does that mean?
All Livvi’s Place playgrounds are designed and built so that children of all ages and abilities and their families can play together in the one space. We really noticed how this park delivered on this because our five year old and our 2 year old ran in opposite directions and found different things they wanted to play with that suited their own interests and abilities. There were some pieces of equipment they played on together and others they decided to go and have a play on their own. The park we had visited minutes before Livvi’s Place was probably more geared to older kids and both of our little tribe members needed assistance to navigate the equipment. The visit to that park was short lived, but when we found Livvi’s Place, we couldn’t convince them to leave!
There are 6 key principles all Livvi’s Place play areas include
Why are these parks so great? Leading academics, practitioners and the community all pulled together to decide what the purpose of all Livvi’s Place parks would be. Here’s what you’ll find in all of them:
- Everyone can play
- There’s access to nature
- Total experience
- Connection to community
- Play independence
As we moved around the playground we did see that parents were really hands on with their kids. One tribe were digging in the elevated sandpit and making sandcastles with cups. Another tribe were climbing into the spiderweb swing to see how many could fit in there for a ride and they invited my kids to join them!
Lots of kids ran to jump on the in-built trampolines and they figured out their own system for sharing the space so everyone got a turn. We even spotted a tribe from school there and said a quick hello. Visiting Livvi’s Place really did fulfil all of the key principles of the play area.
Livvi’s Place playgrounds can be found all over Australia
Olivia’s parents lost their baby girl to a rare disease and through their grief, they found a beautiful way to commemorate their daughter’s life. They wanted to build playgrounds for other children with a strategy aimed at creating healthier and happier lives for our kids. Because play is a fundamental part of childhood development and it helps to create a sense of community, creating Livvi’s Place play areas was the perfect way to ensure that children of all ages and abilities had the same opportunity to play and enjoy this special time in their life. You can find a Livvi’s Place play area near you by clicking here.
Livvi’s Place has thought of absolutely everything
The play equipment at Livvi’s Place is custom made to be accessible and intergenerational. There are pathways all through the playground for easy wheelchair access, passive areas for children with sensory disorders who might need to have some quiet space, sensory play and tactile artworks, fully enclosed by fencing and there’s also plenty of accessible parking. There’s also bathroom facilities for everyone right near the play area. Some Livvi’s Place’s have their own cafes which provide regular programs and activities for their inclusive play space, and they also provide employment and training opportunities for people with disabilities. To find a Livvi’s Cafe, click here.
Livvi’s Place playgrounds are made possible thanks to the Touched By Olivia foundation
There are already 21 Livvi’s Place play areas across Australia and there are plans for more to come! But none of this would have been possible without the generosity of the community and local businesses. There are so many ways to help this brilliant cause. You can donate funds directly to the charity, hold a fundraiser in your community or school, become a corporate partner or sponsor or simply be an active voice in asking your local council and the Touched By Olivia foundation to bring a Livvi’s Place to your community! But most importantly – take your tribe if you see a Livvi’s Place on your adventures and experience the magic of a Livvi’s Place for yourself.
Have you visited a Livvi’s Place and want to tell us about? We would love to hear from you!