Port Macquarie Liberty Swing opens on Town Beach Reserve

David Gough gives the swing a try.

David Gough gives the swing a try.

There is nothing like pure joy.

Seven-year-old Arthur Kinney had his first swing on Thursday morning during the opening of Port Macquarie's new Liberty Swing at Town Beach Reserve.

His mum, Emily, admitted that she 'welled up a bit' as he took to the Australian-designed swing.

Importantly too, is the message that the Liberty Swing brings to the Port Macquarie community: inclusiveness, she said.

"We've been really excited about this project and are keen supporters of Livvi’s Place Playground at Westport Park.

"There is a nest swing over at that playground but Arthur likes to sit up and look around and take it all in.

"Arthur is very small for his age, but he has gotten to the stage where he is too long for a regular child's swing, but he is not developed enough to safely utilise an adult swing on his own.

"So we were in a bit of limbo waiting for this project to come to completion.

Arthur loves the movement and the swing but more importantly he loves coming down to the park and to be with other kids at the playground.

Emily Kinney

"Arthur loves the movement and the swing but more importantly he loves coming down to the park and to be with other kids at the playground.

"This is great therapy for his sensory and motor functions; he just loves the movement," she said.

Emily said it was very exciting for them as a family.

The Liberty Swing also shows Port Macquarie is inclusive for people with disabilities, she added.

Along with the Rotary Club of Port Macquarie Sunrise, another driving force behind the project was Pip Cullen from All Together Therapy.

An occupational therapist, Ms Cullen has been campaigning for the swing for the past six years.

She says the Liberty Swing will allow children and adults to experience the thrill of a swing, many of whom have never had this opportunity before.

Here we go: Pip Cullen and Emily and Arthur Kinney preparing for the first ride in the newly-opened Liberty Swing on Town Beach Reserve on Thursday morning.

Here we go: Pip Cullen and Emily and Arthur Kinney preparing for the first ride in the newly-opened Liberty Swing on Town Beach Reserve on Thursday morning.

"I know there are a lot of families and carers in the region that have been advocating for this swing," she said.

"It is wonderful to see that vision become a reality.

"I am constantly promoting and reinforcing the importance of play and movement for development.

"I hope the swing is the beginning of many more facilities like this that can be used by the whole community irrespective of their ability."

Rotary Sunrise's Jenny Sinclair said the $50,000 project was delivered through contributing funds, goods in kind and volunteer time.

"We are proud to deliver this project to the community," she said. "More so, we are excited to see the swing in action and see the joyful smiles."

Mayor Peta Pinson described the project as a wonderful demonstration of community working together and realising amazing things.

“Providing facilities for community members of all abilities is a high priority for council,” Ms Pinson said.

“We are delighted to have been able to contribute to the Liberty Swing and look forward to continuing our work with a broad range of groups that focus on making us a more inclusive, accessible and vibrant community.”

Other organisations to support the project were Variety Club of Australia, Omnicare Alliance, Rotary Australia Benevolent Society Rotary Foundation, Eire Constructions, Port Mobile Fencing and Sign City Port Macquarie. 

Sunrise Rotarians also worked alongside members of the Military Brotherhood Motor Cycle Club, local AFL club and families and friends of those with disabilities.

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