Sean initially heard about the Touched By Olivia Family on an SBS documentary “Behind the front Door”, which shared the Perkins Family’s story, and their mission and inspired him to find out more.
The reason he wanted to get involved in this charity when they realised their son, Luke, had “special wants”, and that’s when their world changed.
Sean said “We learned Luke was a unique little person, and due to his uniqueness, would face barriers to participation, opportunity, and relationships. We also saw how uncomfortable, and indifferent the wider community is with disability. Touched by Olivia’s vision of creating a national inclusive play space network struck a chord with us, and we contacted TBO the next day.”
And the rest is history.
The most interesting part of their involvement so far, Sean says without a doubt the was the opportunity to meet many amazing people on their journey. From the founders of TBO, who were inspired by their daughter, Olivia to create their vision of inclusive play, to Rebecca Ho, who’s tireless energy, drive, and sense of fun, delivered the vision.
“I know Olivia would be very proud of mum and dad.” Sean says.
Sean’s biggest challenge was to get the wider community to understand the vision and the need for an inclusive play space. It is very difficult for people to understand what barriers there are to inclusion in the community, without having any direct experience with disability.
Engaging the community in the project is critical to its success, as each communities needs are unique, and after all, the project is for the community. Without strong community support, the design, funding, use, and care a play space needs, will not happen.
Sean says that he is the most proud of his community and for getting behind this project and turning it into a reality so quickly.