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Dream Playground History
In June 2012 Tammy Conforti traveled to South Dakota for vacation and noticed a tiny playground with unique looking swings while out fishing. She photographed the playground to use as a research tool. During her research, she was amazed by all the accessible playground equipment that was available. Tammy has worked for the Kenosha Unified School District for 17 years as a Educational Support Professional in special education classrooms and has first-hand experience with the everyday challenges children with special need experience.
Tammy took friends, Karen and Dano, to visit accessible playgrounds in Illinois and northern Wisconsin for further research and to share her findings of these amazing playgrounds. These trips sparked the idea to take a look at our community and what Kenosha had to offer at their playgrounds. Discovering that the vast majority of the playground equipment available was extremely inaccessible to children with disabilities, the vision of creating an inclusive accessible playground in Kenosha began.
Teaming up with Jaime Forsythe was a no brainer as the next step in creating this dream playground. Jaime’s daughter, Amity, has Spina Bifida and has been the heart of inspiration for this project. Together Tammy and Jaime started organizing play dates at accessible playgrounds and spreading the word about this dream to anyone who would listen. On on August 23, 2012 they had a meeting with Mayor Bosman to share the vision of the Dream Playground and gather some guidance on moving forward. Partnering up with an existing non-profit agency like the Kenosha Achievement Center was brought up as a strategy in reaching the playground goal, so that is exactly what these ladies did.
On August 28, 2012, KAC called Tammy and expressed their support and interest in adopting the project with a commitment to see the project to the end. From there, the Dream Playground Project was taken under KAC’s guidance and the partnership was announced to the City of Kenosha Common Council. KAC and Tammy reaffirmed their commitment to raise money and combine it with the city’s allocated budget to create an inclusive accessible playground in Kenosha.