Mae Murray Foundation Youth Panel Podcast
We are delighted to introduce our new Podcast, which has been planned and created by our Youth Panel. The Youth Panel is a group of Mae Murray Foundation members, aged 13-24, who help plan events and projects using their lived experience. These members all have experience of being excluded from social and leisure settings and they use their learning and experience to create solutions for the next generation.
Click on the links below to listen to the Youth Panel Podcast.
Episode One – Life at Mae Murray Foundation – Get to know us!
Episode Two – Our Mae Murray Foundation Memories
Episode Three – Participants, Parents, Perspective.
Episode Four – Memories & Experiences as Volunteers
Click here to view our Annual Report, which covers our impact from April 2022 to March 2023.
All-ability surf days at Portrush East Strand
As Summer approaches we would like to introduce our new partner who will operate our all-ability surf days at Portrush East Strand; SUB 6! Check out the team as they tested out our new sit-down surf board!
We would like to thank Centre for Public Health, Queen’s University Belfast for funding our new beautiful sit down surf board. We cannot wait to hit the waves!
ADAPT my Beach Launch
Last week we celebrated the launch of ADAPT my Beach; a guide to create, manage, sustain and improve an Inclusive Beach. It was fab to share this day with members, organisations and our other stakeholders. Click here to view ADAPT my Beach: https://drive.google.com/…/1VkNIM5h…/view
Family Event Fun!
We had a lovely family event for all ages and abilities at Carnfunnock Country Park. We had fun with The Music Yard Jo Jingles Co. Antrim Sensory Kids and enjoyed our The Big Lunch Northern Ireland. Keep an eye on our newsletter for more events like this!
ADAPT my Beach
ADAPT my Beach – How to create, manage, sustain and improve an Inclusive Beach (click to download)
Mae Murray Foundation has spearheaded the design and implementation of Inclusive Beaches in Northern Ireland, and now our learning will be shared with others across the UK, Ireland, and beyond.
Alix Crawford, founder of the charity, explains, “We’ve been receiving an increasing number of calls over the last few years, from both UK and Ireland based beach operators, but also some from further afield, asking about our experiences of setting up and sustaining our inclusive beach model. As we now have five years of learning behind us, we felt this was a good time to share our knowledge, which in turn helps progress our vision of building inclusive societies.”
Prior to our work in 2017 with Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, people of all ages with mobility or sensory needs were excluded from beach environments here. But thanks to our partnership work, thousands of people can now enjoy access and participation at five beaches in Northern Ireland.
At an Inclusive Beach visitors will be confident that they can have a stress-free arrival with appropriate parking or drop-off points and dignified toileting facilities that include hoisting facilities and other equipment. Visitors will enjoy accessible connectivity across the beach site and can benefit from the loan of beach mobility equipment and inclusive activities. Looking around an Inclusive Beach you will see people of all ages and abilities taking part together. From beach cleaning to surfing, school trips to community festivals, diversity will be visible.
The ADAPT my Beach guide has been funded by Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and the Centre for Public Health at Queen’s University Belfast.
Funding Manager at Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, Will Steadman, said, “People with disabilities in the UK face challenges using beaches as many beach operators do not fully understand the complex needs of people with disabilities, the barriers to access, and the equipment need to use beaches safely. Mae Murray Foundation’s ADAPT my Beach guide is much needed and a fantastic resource for the sector, which we were very happy to support. Their partnership model is innovative and has been tested extensively through lived experience, which adds to the guide’s strength.”
Prof. Ruth Hunter, Professor of Public Health and Planetary Health at Queen’s University Belfast added “We know from our research that blue spaces, such as seas and beaches, are really important for better health and wellbeing. Making these spaces inclusive ensures that more people, of all abilities, can experience their benefits. We feel very privileged to work with Mae Murray Foundation to help shape the future of Inclusive Beaches. The ADAPT my Beach guide is an invaluable tool that will support the development of inclusive beaches across Northern Ireland and beyond.”
Join our Team!
We are delighted to be advertising two new roles; Community Development Officer (part-time) and Project Co-ordinator (full-time). For more details on these new opportunities and the application process please click on the following links:
CALLING ALL MEMBERS!!
Let’s look ahead together – to the next 5 years
Building on work to date, how will MMF maximise resources to create change for members and deliver change in line with our charitable objectives and inclusive vision? What are the needs, wishes and priorities of MMF members?
Join us online for our Annual General Meeting to contribute to this discussion on Monday 1 August at 7.30pm. To register to attend please click on the following link. You will receive a link to join the meeting on Monday – keep an eye on your junk!
Inclusive Beaches – Book NOW!
Want to enjoy a day at the beach with your family? Booking for all of our Inclusive Beaches is now open! To borrow equipment, you MUST follow our 6 step process:
- Ensure you have membership of Mae Murray Foundation – which is free! Click here
- Watch this online information and safety video. Click here.
- Read Frequently Asked Questions and Terms and Conditions.
- Check beach schedules and equipment options for your preferred beach. If unsure about which piece of equipment is best for you, contact MMF office.
- Complete the online booking request form. You MUST send your request 72 hours in advance. Click here. If the system will not allow you to book for a particular day, that is because the item you are requesting is already booked out.
- Await confirmation email with further instruction. If no email is received contact Mae Murray Foundation office on 03006001166
Our Inclusive Beaches include:
Cranfield Inclusive Beach, Newry and Mourne
Land-based chairs, walkers and crutches are available daily. For dignified toileting and changing, you can also book a hoist, shower chair and table for your visit, with the toilet being accessed by radar key.
Portstewart Strand Inclusive Beach, Causeway Coast and Glens
Land-based chairs and a walker are available daily. Mae Murray Foundation members who have booked the equipment will be able to park for free. There is a brand new Changing Places facility on site, accessed by radar key.
Groomsport Inclusive Beach, North Down & Ards
Land based chairs and a walker are available at weekends, Changing Places facility operational – accessible by radar key.
Portrush East Strand Inclusive Beach, Causeway Coast & Glens
Land and water based chairs and a walker are available every day. Changing Places available accessed by radar key.
Benone Inclusive Beach, Causeway Coast & Glens
Land and water based chairs, walker and crutches available daily. For dignified toileting and changing, you can also book a hoist, shower chair and table for your visit, with the toilet being accessed by radar key.
NEW: All-terrain Wheelchair Loan Scheme – Newcastle
In locations where the infrastructure does not meet the criteria to achieve Inclusive Beach status, we are piloting an All-terrain Wheelchair Loan Scheme. You can borrow the All-terrain Wheelchair for use within the local area. The location of this pilot scheme is Newcastle, Co Down. Equipment is based at the Glenada YMCA Centre. Please follow the 6 step process above to avail of this service.