We, at Parques Reunidos, believe in the transformative ability of making all people smile whilst enjoying quality time with their loved ones.
People with autism face many difficulties when trying to simply enjoy life, and it is only through everyone’s engagement that we can help them out.
Did you know that, according to the CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, at least one in 44 children is autistic? According to numerous, well-respected studies, there are tremendous benefits that result from when children with autism play, as playing has the proven ability to make them smile, laugh, and come out of their shell.
In 2019, when Splish Splash became the first water park in New York to receive a Certified Autism Center designation by IBCCES, it not only became the most accessible, autism-friendly water park in the state; it also allowed it to keep its promise of putting all customers, and their rights, at the heart of its business.
Through this initiative, Splish Splash offers New York residents a way of making things easier for autistic children by providing a full accessibility program and Certified Autism Center accommodations.
Splish Splash’s staff and team members receive specialized training that supplies them with autism awareness skills, including the knowledge and expertise required to cater to those with unique needs. The training curriculum covers an in-depth overview of autism, communication, emotional and sensory awareness and social skills.
To provide equal opportunities to family fun for all guests, Splish Splash asks that guests fill out an IBCCES Accessibility Card prior to visiting the water park and let it know of any disabilities, mobility impairments, and/or cognitive disorders. Customers also don’t have to worry about their private information, as the Accessibility Card also ensures full privacy.
The park worked with IBCCES to create the Splish Splash Sensory Guide. The Guide helps visitors to find their way around the park easily, as it includes the provision of noise-canceling headphones, quiet areas and cabanas, all of which ensure that children with autism can find a safe refuge to retreat to when they feel the need to do so. However, the Sensory Guide does not end its provisions there. Other, equally useful, resources that can be found in the Sensory Guide include cell phone charging locations, diaper changing stations, parking and extensive dining options to cater for most tastes.
Sensory issues and their importance cannot be undermined when it comes to making people with autism feel at home. Autistic children can suffer from hyper or hyposensitivity in different manners.
The Guide includes valuable information on how a child’s senses may be affected by each ride and attraction. Guests can then plan a more sensory-friendly experience for their children around touch, taste, sound, smell and sight, therefore addressing all potential hazards.
Find out more about Splish Splash’s Sensory Guide here!