Making the Perth Royal Show fun for everyone

Published on 30 Sep 2021


AFL star Tim Kelly who is a proud father of three sons, including two with autism, has thrown his support behind a joint initiative between APM Communities and Wanslea to make the Perth Royal Show more fun for people living with disabilities.

Backed by Lottery West; APM Communities, in collaboration with NDIS partner Wanslea have worked with the Perth Royal Show to create three Chill Out Zones to enable more people to enjoy the entertainment.

“Many people living on the spectrum, like my two beautiful boys experience sensory overload when they see bright lights and hear loud noises, now they can enjoy the Show like everyone else” Kelly said.

A play area with white a small tent in the corner covered with fairy lights

Former Paralympian and General Manager of APM Communities, Jason Diederich has been thrilled by the response.

“You’d be amazed by how many people cannot attend events like the Perth Royal Show because they are living with sensory difficulties. At APM our mantra is - enabling better lives and we couldn’t be happier to drive this initiative,” Diederich said.

The Chill Out Zones allow people living with a disability, their families and carers, a chance to engage with APM Communities and Wanslea which are Partners in the Community with the NDIS.

These three zones boast mindfulness activities, sensory equipment and disposable ear muffs to ensure everyone can enjoy the show's activities.

The program also offers a dedicated low sensory area to allow people who may be overwhelmed by the lights and sounds a chill-out zone to refresh.

Tim Kelly sitting in the chill out zone with his son, reading a book

On September 28 between 10am – 12pm stall holders and vendors will turn down the volume and dim the lights for two hours to cater for people living with sensory overload.

“My wife Caitlin and I are doing everything we possibly can to ensure all of our boys experience the best life possible and it’s initiatives like these that are allowing us to do that,” Kelly said.

To make the most of the initiative, the Royal Agricultural Society of WA has kindly donated 600 tickets to APM to offer their participants and carers.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity of the Royal Agricultural Society of WA. These tickets are going to bring so many smiles to the faces of so many families.”