Board of disabilities uses ARPA funds to enhance accessibility in Warren County


LEBANON, OH -- Warren County is one of sixty-seven counties that will benefit from the $14.9 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds distributed by Ohio Governor, Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) Director, Kim Hauck. The Warren County Board of Developmental (WCBDD) requested and was granted approximately $51,467. The funds will be used to enhance infrastructure at a local park, as well as to purchase adult changing tables for public spaces.

“These investments are truly going to make a difference for people with developmental disabilities and their families by giving them more access to the communities where they live," DeWine stated in a news release. “People with developmental disabilities deserve opportunities, a reliable workforce, and an accessible state to live, learn, work, and succeed in.”

At Makino Park in Mason, accessibility and inclusivity stand at the forefront. The 35-acre park boasts a vibrant playground, an FCC mini pitch soccer field, a sheltered area, and accessible restrooms. Two adaptive ball fields (currently being built,) will be the park’s latest addition.

Due to a partnership between Makino Park and WCBDD, the adaptive fields will soon include eight sufficiently spaced dugout benches. The benches will offer athletes who use mobility devices the opportunity to choose where they want to sit without physical or visual obstructions. Also included in the plans are four ADA-compliant picnic tables, and one motorized device charging station. All items will be covered under the ARPA funds granted to WCBDD, and will be installed by November 1, 2024.

“We are very happy that we are once again able to partner with the City of Mason and Makino Park by funding specific features that will make the park even more accessible for people with disabilities,” said WCBDD Superintendent, Megan Manuel.

Additionally, the ARPA funds will cover a total of seven adult changing tables of four different sizes. As Warren County is home to a multitude of community events and festivals, adult changing tables will be integral in providing reasonable accommodations to community members with disabilities. “This will eliminate a barrier that some people have faced by not having the bathroom accommodations they may need,” Manuel explained. “We look forward to partnering with local groups and organizations in order to loan the adult changing tables for events and activities that allow people with disabilities the opportunity to participate.”

The Warren County Board of Developmental Disabilities provides services and support to over 2,400 individuals with disabilities and their families, through Early Intervention, Community Resources, Employment Services, Social, Recreational, Residential, Service Coordination, and other programs.

More News from Lebanon
I'm interested
I disagree with this
This is unverified