Wheelchair Accessible Beaches

by Jules S.

Imagine going to the beach with your family, but not being able to get past the parking lot. It happens every day for people who use wheelchairs. Beaches For All (BFA), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded by executive director Jane Danielson is doing something about it.

Ms. Danielson created BFA after recognizing that none of Florida's 1,700 miles of beaches was fully accessible to the water or provided a safe means for people with mobility chairs to traverse and fully utilize the beach and ocean.

As a result, BFA has undertaken the creation of a Florida-based complex specially equipped to reduce unnecessary barriers to restricted beaches for individuals who are physically disabled.

Conforming to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), this initiative will provide the only wheelchair accessible beach facility in the State of Florida, with unprecedented access to highly specialized services and facilities for the disabled, as well as seniors.

The construction of this flagship project is projected to be completed over three years and cost approximately $3.2 million. The long-term goal is to create a sustainable model (prototype) in Florida for duplication in other beach areas.

For more information, visit www.beachesforall.org or call 941-870-4797.

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