Residents and visitors of East Gippsland will now have access to Marveloo, a mobile accessible restroom catering for people with a severe disability and their carers.
Maroondah City Council has donated the Marveloo in support of a partner agreement in place between Maroondah City Council and East Gippsland Shire Council and in recognition of responses to the 2019-20 bushfires.
The Marveloo was formally handed over to East Gippsland Shire Council by the Mayor of Maroondah, Cr Rob Steane at a special ceremony near the Lakes Entrance Footbridge on Friday 24 March.
“I am very pleased that we have been able to provide this Marveloo to East Gippsland Shire Council, and that it will be located here in Lakes Entrance providing accessible bathroom facilities for the many visitors to this key tourist town in the East Gippsland region,” said Cr Steane.
In attendance at the handover ceremony were East Gippsland and Maroondah councillors and representatives from the East Gippsland Disability Advisory Committee and LEADA.
“We’re very pleased to accept the donation of Marveloo from Maroondah City Council," East Gippsland Shire Mayor Cr Reeves said.
The Marveloo will be located here in Lakes Entrance until a permanent Changing Places facility is constructed, with the ability to be move it to other key destinations in the region for festivals and other activities.
“The Marveloo, with its well-thought-out inclusions, opens up the opportunities and possibilities for people with disability and high support needs and their carers. It means they can participate in more activities knowing they will have safe and comfortable bathroom facilities,” Cr Reeves said.
“Marveloo is an example of innovation as well as design excellence, meeting Australian design standards for access and mobility and complying fully with relevant disability and building legislation. We congratulate Maroondah on the initiative and thank them for the most generous donation as part of a partner agreement between the two councils.”
Maroondah Councillor and Chair of the Maroondah Disability Advisory Committee, Kylie Spears said it was exciting to know visitors to Lakes Entrance would be able to utilise the accessible restroom.
“Marveloo was the first of its kind in Australia when it was launched by Maroondah City Council in 2013,” said Cr Spears.
“The creation of Marveloo was an important step in improving access to community spaces and events for people with profound disabilities,” said Cr Spears.
“The concept and design was developed at the time by Council’s Team Leader Parks, Sportsfield Maintenance & Projects, Don Di Giandomenico. Don was inspired by his own daughter, who has cerebral palsy, and his wife Angela, who cares for her,” said Cr Spears.
“Today it is great to see that his idea has expanded and we now have Marveloo’s located across Australia, supported by all levels of government, allowing people who have a disability to attend a variety of events, from local to international, knowing that their bathroom needs will be met with dignity,” said Cr Spears.
Marveloo is accessed using an MLAK, a restricted master key system allowing people with disabilities 24-hour access to public facilities.
The Marveloo includes:
East Gippsland Disability Advisory Committee member, Steve Fletcher, is delighted to know that a Marveloo is now available.
“Anything to create participation of people with disability is a good thing,” Steve said.
“It’s a great facility to have for people with disability around Lakes Entrance, and because it’s portable if an event needs it somewhere else in East Gippsland, that event is supported to be accessible.
“It is all about getting people with disability out and about within their community.”