École Mattie McCullough Elementary School

Red Deer (Alberta)
Mattie McCullough Elementary School team

Project Description

Mattie McCullough Elementary School has a number of students with disabilities that could not participate in recess and lunchtime activities on the playground because it was inaccessible; they decided to change that.

The school’s grant will go towards updating an older existing structure to create a beautiful, barrier-free play-scape that will allow for play among children (and adults) of all abilities. A minimum of 50% of the equipment will accommodate kids with disabilities including a rocking ship glider with ramp, revolution spinner with harness, ability whirl and an ability swing. The adapted equipment will also benefit students with cognitive disabilities. .

Project Team Q&A

  1. Why did you decide to break down barriers in your community?

    Our class of Grade 2 students came to our Vice Principal and said, “You need to fix our playground so our friend with a wheelchair can play!” And our Red Deer Rotary Clubs felt that our community needed more playground space that people of all abilities can use together as a long-term investment in our community.

  2. How is this project going to make a difference in your community?

    Children with disabilities and their families are often limited in their abilities to find environments where they feel comfortable enough to socialize, play, and have a true sense of belonging. The Access for All project will allow for greater opportunities for inclusion, bringing children and adults of all abilities together for the pure enjoyment of physical activity.

  3. What’s the best thing about being a Barrier Buster?

    This project will allow people of all ages and all abilities to be active outdoors. They will also be able to foster and grow long-term social bonds. Busting barriers with a Rick Hansen Foundation grant is helping us help all kinds of people to be active together in a way that wasn’t possible before.

Awareness Event


September 9, 2017

Access For All Barrier-Free Playscape

Location: 26 Lawford Avenue, Red Deer, AB T4R 3L6

Time: 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Description: The grand opening begins with speeches from local community supporters including Paralympic athlete, Tammy Cunnington. Speeches will be followed by an official ribbon cutting. Guests will enjoy hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, cake, face painting and balloon animals.

For more information, please contact:
Grant Burchnall at (403) 348-1826