New self-propelled wheelchair expands equipment for people with disability at Cronulla beach

A new, electric, self-propelled beach wheelchair has expanded the equipment range for people with a disability at Cronulla beach.

St Vincent de Paul Society provided the wheelchair, along with more sand mats (Mobi Mats) and a hand rail for the access ramp in a joint initiative with Sutherland Sutherland Shire Council.

The council has previously provided beach wheelchairs and Mobi Mats for short-term loan at no cost from the lifeguards room, but the new model takes support for people with limited mobility to a new level.

Vinnies Services executive director Niamh Mannion said the Beaches for Every Body project stemmed from joint vision with council to better understand community needs.

"We've heard what the community has to say and worked with the council and Cronulla Surf Life Saving Club to implement initiatives that provide greater access for people living with a disability, such as a support rail leading from the Esplanade to the sand and additional Mobi Mats, which account for the changing tide."

Beach wheelchairs can be used on the sand and in shallow water.

The Mobi Mat is a long sturdy mat that can be rolled out over the top of soft sand to ensure access to the water's edge for individuals who use a wheelchair or anyone with difficulty walking.

Bookings are necessary and can be made online, or by contacting the Lifeguard Headquarters on 8522 2100.

Arrangements can also be made to park or drop off in front of the surf club.

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