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Goa's Accessible Beach Fest - A review by Sunita Sancheti

Goa is a destination which is an all time favourite for all. Around the world, people want to visit Goa.

I have been to Goa several times with cousins and friends, but this time the excitement of going to Goa was different.

Umoja had planned an accessible beach fest from 31 March to 9 April 2017, and the word 'accessible' made me feel WOW!

How was it accessible I am sure you would like to know.

To begin with, we stayed at Silver Sands hotel, which is just across Candolim beach. The hotel had portable ramps, and instructions were given to the staff about our requirements. There was accessible internal transport as well.

Candolim beach had a ramp from the entrance to the shore. I could smell the sea water, feel the breeze and of course the hot and fuming sun was also waiting for us.

The ramp was 200 metres long and 1.5 metres wide. Once you are on the beach, it is so tempting to get into the water and there was a floating wheelchair.

All measures were there like safety belts. There were also life guards with us so they checked how deep into the sea we wanted to go.

The ramp was convenient for the visually impaired too as they could easily find their way. Many local special schools were part of this festival too and there was a sign language interpreter to explain activities to the hearing impaired.

It was an inclusive event in every sense with senior citizens enjoying using the ramp to reach the shore easily.

Neenu Kewlani, who is my best friend, hosted the event along with me and it was a wonderful experience!

About the Writer

Sunita Sancheti is an active participant in all the activities associated with empowering and improving the quality of life of people with spinal injury. She co-hosted the Accessible Beach fest in Goa organized by Umoja. Umoja plans to have many such fests and would like to have suggestions from you.

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