An organization in Rochester is working to establish real time access to recreation and sports for people with disabilities.
Rochester Accessible Adventures is about a year old, and Executive Director Anita O’Brien says their mission is to train recreational businesses to offer their services to everyone.
"I love the idea of adventure and that each person is able to choose what that means to them in life. Particularly in RAA it really is focused on recreation, active healthy lifestyle opportunities."
O’Brien said inclusive recreational activities are often available as specific programs for people with disabilities, and are therefore limited to certain schedules and settings. She said as a community, more businesses should have the resources to be inclusive all of the time.
"I really began thinking that there was a gap in what people were able to access on their own time. That more systemic level of how our community operates with regards to recreation."
The organization trains businesses to offer their services to everyone whenever their doors are open. The Erie Canal Boat Company is the home of Rochester's first APACC - Adaptive Paddling and Cycling Center. Here, you can rent both adaptive and standard equipment, O’Brien said, and enjoy cycling or kayaking on the Erie Canal.
"We want to get families back to recreating together and continue that lifelong approach to recreation and health."
RAA is also working with groups associated with pickleball and sled hockey; and they partner with the Rochester Wheels wheelchair basketball team as well.
Rochester Accessible Adventures has been holding a series of reach out events at R-Centers around Rochester, the next event is Saturday May 13th.
This story was produced by WXXI’s Inclusion Desk, focusing on disabilities and inclusion.