Wheelienet is a fun and interactive program for South Australian schools, corporate organisations and community groups that helps you gain a greater awareness of the issues and challenges facing people living with disability.
The Wheelienet program has a range of objectives including raising awareness of wheelchair sports in South Australia, encouraging safe driving, highlighting the dangers of drinking, drug-taking and poor decision-making in everyday life, improving the understanding of people living with spinal cord injury, and encouraging participation.
The program has until recently been delivered by Disability Recreation and Sports South Australia, but following the closure of that organisation Wheelienet has found a new home at Novita.
How Does It Work?
Wheelienet is suitable for groups of all ages, with kindergartens, lower and upper primary schools, high schools, corporate organisations, community groups, youth groups, and sporting clubs among the groups that could benefit from the program’s important messages.
A Wheelienet session typically takes between 45 and 90 minutes, and includes a presentation, a discussion about issues such as sporting opportunities for people living with disability and accident prevention, an opportunity to play wheelchair basketball, and a question time.
For schools, groups of up to 150 students and staff are ideal for the presentation and discussion component of a session, with a maximum of 30 students for the activity component of the session. Wheelchairs are provided.
Would Wheelienet suit my group?
The Wheelienet program is tailored to suit your group’s needs, and it can be delivered in a number of settings.
Wheelienet is ideal for schools that want to promote physical activity and participation, as well as educating students and staff about disability – especially if they have students living with disability attending their school.
The Wheelienet program is also a great way to help school, corporate and community groups learn more about inclusion for kids, young people and adults living with disability.
And, Wheelienet is also a great way to introduce kids and young people to the wide range of sporting opportunities that are available for people living with disability.
Including a game of wheelchair basketball in a Wheelienet session reinforces all of these messages. It gives you a unique opportunity to experience what it feels like – if only briefly – to be in a wheelchair, as well as experiencing wheelchair sport.
What are the benefits?
You will gain a greater awareness of:
- the impacts of spinal cord injuries
- injury prevention
- the everyday issues and challenges facing people living with disability
- sporting opportunities for people living with disability.
Wheelienet sessions are inspirational and motivational. Some sessions can also provide you with the chance to meet and talk with South Australian wheelchair athletes.
What do past/current participants have to say?
Westminster School at Marion has been a long-term user of the Wheelienet program, and Head of Physical Education David Tiller said the students really enjoyed it.
“In our Year 10 program we have a number of different activities that are very much about the community, including things like self-defence and wheelchair basketball.
“The wheelchair basketball through the Wheelienet program exposes the students to a sport that’s totally different and gives them greater understand and empathy for moving in a wheelchair and the challenges faced by people living with disability.
“And they really enjoy it. They understand that some people live using a wheelchair, and it’s a totally different experience.”
Westminster had been using the Wheelienet program for more than ten years, and intended to keep delivering the program to its students.
“Education today is more than just maths, science and English – you need to expose the students to as many experiences as possible to prepare them for their future.
“The Wheelienet program delivers something totally different and challenging for the students. Moving in a wheelchair with the ball and trying to score, and using their arms to move and manoeuvre the wheelchairs – it’s a different challenge for them.”
How do I book a Wheelienet session?
Novita’s Wheelienet Disability Awareness Program is coordinated by state wheelchair athlete and basketballer Michael Neroni.
For more information, and to book a Wheelienet session, complete the enquiry form below or contact Novita’s Customer Experience Team on 1300 668 482.