Mitchell Youth addresses accessibility issues

McKenzie Hinz shows off the new portable lift for the West Perth Lion's Pool

The West Perth Lion’s Pool now has a new portable accessible pool lift thanks to the efforts of a 24-year-old resident.

McKenzie Hinz loves to swim, but has cerebral palsy, so he had to travel to pools out of town along with his support workers.

Leeds Employment Services Youth Coach Jordan Teed helped Hinz become a Youth Accessibility Leader and make the project a reality.

“One of the activities that McKenzie loved to do even from a toddler age, was to swim. And so that’s something that he and his support staff do at least once a month, if not more, but unfortunately they would have to go to Stratford, Seaforth or St. Marys. So McKenzie did not have as long to swim,” she said.

“So we shopped around to try and find one (a pool lift) that is portable that we could use in any edge of the pool, so that could be dropped into the deep end, or shallow end, or wherever their friends or their support staff is. And we found one, and it was about $19,000,” she explained.

Hinz, the Lions Club of Mitchell, Leads Employment Services-Youth Leadership Development Project, and Facile Independent Facilitation- Perth helped Hinz obtain a $10,000.00 grant from the Government of Canada’s Enabling Accessibility Fund.

And Hinz was able to raise an additional $12,000.00 to enable people with mobility restrictions to use the Mitchell pool.  With the extra funding, Hinz wants to see an adult change table purchased for the facility.

Additionally Hinz would like to thank the Lions Club of Mitchell who contributed $5,000. Furthermore, we would also like to thank the Kinnette Club of Mitchell & District, St. Vincent de Paul Church, the West Perth Fire Department, and all the other organizations, businesses, and community members for their generous contributions.