Our school is talking about a new “inclusive” recreation program that is beginning in our community. What’s the fuss? Aren’t there already “special” recreation programs for kids who have disabilities?
Yes, there are recreation and athletic programs that exist that are designed specifically for individuals with physical disabilities and other programs that are designed for individuals with cognitive disabilities. However, some individuals with disabilities do not choose to be involved in exclusionary recreational activities that separate them from friends who may not have a disability.
In inclusive recreation kids with disabilities are
provided the support and accommodations they need to
participate in existing recreation programs with their peers
without disabilities. The opportunities to take swimming
lessons, play soccer, join a 4-H club and numerous other
recreational activities allow kids with and without
disabilities to come together around common interests. This
creates an opportunity for friendships to develop and for
kids with and without disabilities to become physically and
For more information on inclusive recreation, call the Missouri Access Recreation program, toll free, at 1-877-838-3408.
Michelle Reynolds, Director of the Missouri Developmental Disabilities Resource Center, University of Missouri-Kansas City
Last update: Wednesday, April 14, 2010