Spend day at beach


South-west residents are invited to spend a day at Port Campbell beach to celebrate International Day of People with Disability on Sunday 3 December from 10 am.

Port Campbell Surf Lifesaving Club is hosting a program of free and accessible activities including surfing, guided beach wheelchair rides, and a program of sports and activities at the tennis courts.

The Great South Coast branch of the Disabled Surfers Association will run surfing experiences from 10 am to 2 pm. All equipment (including wetsuits) is provided.

Guided wheelchair rides along the beach to the suspension bridge are also available from

10 am to 2 pm.

An All Abilities Unleashed Kids program of inclusive sports will run from 10 am to 1 pm at the tennis courts.

Registrations are essential for each activity at www.corangamite.vic.gov.au/BeachDay

There will be a free BBQ lunch and community meeting about improving beach accessibility at 12:30 pm in the Port Campbell Surf Lifesaving Club’s Sunset Room. Learn about the Port Campbell Accessible Beaches Project – an initiative to improve physical access to Port Campbell beach.

A panel discussion with James Czencz, Cr Jo Beard, Emma Olivier, Patrick Caruana and Sara Wakeling will explore access, inclusion and invisible disability from 2 pm in the Sunset Room.

Port Campbell Surf Lifesaving Club president Scott McKenzie said the day aimed to provide fun activities for people with disability, as well as shine a light on accessibility barriers at the beach.

“We are a nation that loves the beach – it’s part of our culture,” Mr McKenzie said.

“But a recent survey found that more than 60 per cent of Australians aged 65 or over and those with a disability cannot participate in their preferred beach activity.

“Of these, 26 per cent are unable to visit the beach at all.”

Mr McKenzie said Port Campbell was the only safely patrolled beach between Apollo Bay and Warrnambool.

He said that while it would take a ‘whole of community’ approach to improve physical access to Port Campbell beach, the club was taking steps to be more accessible and inclusive for people with disability.

“We have members driving positive change. For instance, our Junior Coordinator Georgia Copeland is introducing Starfish Nippers for children with disability into this year’s Nippers program.

“James Czencz is another volunteer member who is passionate about improving social inclusion, who along with Natalie Powell, has been instrumental in organising the Accessible Beach Day,” Mr McKenzie said.

“We also want to thank Corangamite Shire, the Disabled Surfers Association, and Timboon and District Healthcare Service for supporting this event.”

/Public Release. View in full here.