Supporting Accessibility at Christina Lake Park
Christina Lake Park now has two accessible features for people to enjoy – a Mobi-Mat and a floating chair.
The Mobi-Mat was installed in the summer of 2022. For people who use mobility equipment or strollers, or have balance or other mobility challenges, sand can be a huge barrier to accessing and enjoying a day at the beach. Christina Lake’s 92 foot-long Mobi-Mat is a durable and portable rollout mat that provides a stable surface for people to get across the sand to the water.
Carey Wiseman, pictured above, had the opportunity to be one of the first people to try out the Mobi-Mat last summer and said, “as a recent amputee it was an excellent experience. It was nice to be down by the lake and feel like a part of things.” Once the mat is rolled out mid-June, it stays in place through the end of September, so people have access to the feature all summer long.
The specialized floating chair has flotational wheels and arm rests and gives people the opportunity to get into the water in a stable buoyant piece of equipment. It is designed with everyone in mind and can be utilized by anyone who requires additional support to be in the water. The chair can be signed out at the Christina Lake Visitor Centre during its operating hours. To ensure safety, chair users must wear a lifejacket and have a support person with them. After signing a waiver, a member of the Visitor Centre staff will accompany people to the beach to assist with set up.
Acquiring, storing, and maintaining these two pieces of equipment was championed by the Christina Lake Tourism Society and supported by many community members, businesses, and volunteers. Funding was provided in part by the BC Parks Community Park Enhancement, which is part of the BC Parks Licence Plate Program. “Losing mobility and no longer being able to enjoy life as you once had can be very challenging,” said one of the directors of the Christina Lake Tourism Society, who has first-hand experience with mobility issues after having a stroke in 2016. “Knowing that we have helped people to be able to once again enjoy the water is very gratifying.”
Read more about BC Parks’ ongoing Commitment to Inclusion.
For information about accessible features in parks, visit: https://bcparks.ca/accessibility/