At SeaWorld’s water park in Orlando, Aquatica, they are taking appropriate action for the park to benefit children with autism.
Aquatica became the first water park to have a certified autism center. This is beneficial for parents of children with autism, who may have a hard time spending a full day at theme parks.
The changes recently made by SeaWorld are to help make their water park more inviting for children with autism. Parks around Orlando can be really crowded and loud, where Aquatica has the training and resources to benefit children with autism.
SeaWorld has added a quiet room, where children can escape the loud music and crowds. Children with autism can be sensitive to sound, which can make it difficult for them to spend long periods of time in theme parks.
When you think of theme parks, they tend to be loud with music playing from speakers, and with thousands of people gathering.
So with this quiet room, guests with autism can stop by and relax in a nice, quiet setting. There will also be sensory friendly toys that will be added to the room. The quiet room can be found near the first aid station at Aquatica.
Throughout the park, there will larger maps that break down each attraction, by rating them based off of the five senses. By adding this, parents will have a warning on what to expect from each attraction.
These signs will help rank which attractions may be the loudest, along with some of which that may have a lot of bright colors.
In the near future, all of the new signs will be at the front of each attraction. Currently, these extended maps are throughout the park, on the website, and at Guest Services.
This can be vital; as it can help prevent a child with autism have a bad reaction to one of the rides. It also helps make the decision easier to go on an attraction.
Some parents, who may be nervous to let their children go on many rides, will really be able to look into each attraction, and how their child may react. It’s a unique addition that will definitely help children with autism have a better experience in the water park.
In order for Aquatica to get their certification, 80% of their employees who work with the public have to go through specific training. As employees come and go, the percentage must remain at least 80%.
These employees are required to take the 30-minute training course, in which they learn about how people with autism react. Managers at Aquatica are to participate in a full day training session.
Between the training that employees have to go through and the additions to the park, Aquatica is much more appealing for children with autism.
This becomes a park with the proper resources to welcome these children and make sure they’re comfortable during their visit.
Impact on children with autism
Children with autism can experience a day at a water park, where the employees understand and care for them.
Walking around a theme park where 80% of employees know maybe more than the average person about autism is incredible. Not to mention, these are employees that sympathize with them.
The overall experience at Aquatica should improve for these children.
How does this impact other theme parks?
The pressure is on for other theme parks to cater to children with autism.
Orlando is known worldwide for its many theme parks, and now one of the parks caters to children with autism.
In general, theme parks are going to be pressured to make their parks friendlier to people with autism. The changes that Aquatica made can go a long way for other theme parks.