Taronga Zoo hosts autism-friendly day for people on the spectrum
Taronga Zoo will be offering special early entry for guests on the autism spectrum on Saturday 8th April 2017. The iconic zoo in Sydney has teamed up with Autism Spectrum Australia to start the Access Taronga initiative, which aims to provide a range of supports and services for guests on the spectrum.
“On our Access Taronga days, guests on the autism spectrum with their family or friends can enjoy early entry to Taronga Zoo Sydney. This is a great opportunity to enjoy the peace and quiet of the Zoo before it opens to the general public,” said Stephen Williams, Manager - Guest Experience Operations at Taronga Zoo.
For many visitors on the autism spectrum, the large crowds, queues, loud noises and unfamiliar smells can be overwhelming.
Working collaboratively with Taronga Zoo to offer training for their staff, Autism Spectrum Australia has also developed a social story to help prepare guests on the spectrum for the visit. The social story is available to download online.
“We are thrilled to be working with Taronga Zoo to help them provide a quality experience for guests on the autism spectrum. We hope there will be many more,” said Kathie Lane, Aspect Practice Specialist, who has been advising the Zoo on best autism practice.
VIP animal badges will also be given to guests on the spectrum who wish to wear one, allowing the trained staff at the Zoo to easily identify anyone that might need additional support.
Access Taronga day, 8.30am Saturday 8th April 2017.
Visit http://taronga.org.au/autism to register your place.