As part of our campaign to help keep WaterFire’s Access Program Afloat we were honored to have 2018 Ms. Wheelchair Rhode Island, Tina Pedersen, visit us at the WaterFire Arts Center last week to talk about accessibility and the WaterFire Access Program.
The last time Tina visited WaterFire, she was a torch-bearer at our Flames of Hope event back in 2013. That was before she began to rely on a wheelchair for mobility after a stroke during surgery left her paralyzed from the waist down.
“The thing to remember in all this is, it can happen to anyone at any time,” says Tina. “I walked into surgery and I made lunch plans for after that surgery. But I didn’t get to walk out…”
Tina is focused on bringing accessibility issues to the forefront in the state of Rhode Island. “When I saw the post on Facebook about the Access Program, I said, ‘Yes! I want to do THAT!’ And here I am. Providence is for everyone, WaterFire is for everyone.”
We’re thrilled to be working with Tina to help share the message of inclusivity and accessibility. Thank you, Tina! We hope to have you as one of our first guests when our Access Program Kickstarter Campaign is complete!
Successful funding of this Kickstarter will allow us to resume the Access Program with an upgraded vessel to allow for more passengers and in turn more unique experiences for everyone who visits WaterFire.
Your support today will help ensure the Access program will continue to provide free rides for individuals of all ages with mobility issues for many years to come.