Community Raises $500k To Open Australias First All Abilities Playground

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5th November 2009, 04:56pm - Views: 1187

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November 2009



Sydney children of all ages and abilities will be able to play side-by-side on the same equipment,

when Australia's very first all abilities playground at Timbrell Park in Five Dock is opened to the

public on Sunday 15 November.

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP, Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and

Local Government, will officially open the Livvi's Place Timbrell Park playground which is the result of more

than two years collaboration by founding partners Touched by Olivia Foundation, City of Canada Bay and

Leighton Contractors.

Designed in consultation with leading academics, play, disability, and landscape experts, and the local

community, Livivi's Place Timbrell Park aims to dramatically reduce the barriers experienced by children

with special needs and their families, helping to give them a level playing field for life.  The playground’s

unique design and equipment addresses the needs of children with various forms of disability including

mobility, vision and hearing impairment as well as spectrum disorders such as autism.

"Since Touched by Olivia Foundation was established in 2006, our aims have been to bring health and

happiness to kids and their families," said John Perkins, founder of Touched by Olivia Foundation.

"Thanks to the commitment of the founding partners and significant community support, together we have

been able to realise a dream and create an Australian first that promises to have a significant impact on

many families," he said.

Already, families in the local community are becoming aware of the difference that the Livvi's Place,

Timbrell Park playground will mean for them, including Sandra Casinader who is the mother of two children

with autism.

"When I saw the playground plans, I actually started crying because every single thing that makes it so

difficult for us and many of my friends in a similar situation to use a "typical" playground has been so

completely addressed; the attention to detail is astounding," Mrs Casinader said.

The City of Canada Bay has worked closely with the community and founding partners Touched by Olivia

and Leighton Contractors to bring Livvi’s Place to fruition. 

"The opening of Livvi's Place is a fantastic achievement for our community and I would like to thank

everyone who has been involved along the way," Mayor Angelo Tsirekas of the City of Canada Bay said.

"Delivery of this playground is also a wonderful example of Council's commitment to the Let's Play

Strategy, designed to increase the potential of playgrounds and broaden play opportunities in Canada Bay

over the next 10 years,” he said.

Leighton Contractors, one of Australia's leading contracting and development groups, has overseen the

playground delivery including playground design finalisation, subcontractor sourcing and management, and

coordination of all onsite works during construction.

"As a founding partner in Livvi's Place, we are helping to change the lives of children with special needs

and their families by simply doing what we do best – delivering outstanding infrastructure in partnership

with the community," said Mike Metcalfe, General Manager NSW/ACT with the Construction Division of

Leighton Contactors.


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"Leighton Contractors is very proud to be part of the team that has made Australia's first all abilities

playground a reality at Timbrell Park," he said.

Livvi’s Place Timbrell Park is a $1 million project.  With significant community support, Touched by Olivia

Foundation has raised $250,000 to contribute to the overall cost.  The City of Canada Bay has committed

over $500,000 in cash and in-kind contributions while Leighton Contractors has provided $160,000 worth of

in-kind project management services.  A number of other generous supporters, subcontractors and donors

have helped make this project a reality.

The opening of Livvi’s Place Timbrell Park will be a feature event at the Touched by Olivia Foundation’s

annual Family Fun Fair, to be held at Timbrell Park on 15 November 2009.  Everyone is invited to attend


For more information, contact:

Touched by Olivia – Clare Collins (Insight Communications) on 02 9319 3844 or 0414 821 957 

City of Canada Bay – Lisa Szollos on 02 911 6562 or 0409 068 912

Leighton Contractors – Suzanne Mercer on 02 9035 5187 or 0432 418 763

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