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  • Southside

Sporting legends launch new sensory hub in the Aviva

Friday, 14th February, 2020 7:59am
Sporting legends launch new sensory hub in the Aviva

Irish soccer star James McClean is pictured with his two-year-old daughter Willow at the unveiling of Aviva’s new Sensory Hub in Aviva Stadium.

Sporting legends launch new sensory hub in the Aviva

Irish soccer star James McClean is pictured with his two-year-old daughter Willow at the unveiling of Aviva’s new Sensory Hub in Aviva Stadium.

A NEW sensory hub has been installed in the Aviva Stadium for fans attending matches including all the Six Nations home fixtures.

The hub includes a Cubbie Booth sensory solution.

It is part of sponsor Aviva’s commitment to promoting diversity and inclusivity across all areas of its business, including its sponsorships.

With the help of Irish rugby legend Jamie Heaslip and Republic of Ireland footballer James McClean, Aviva unveiled the Aviva Sensory Hub and invited a number of high-profile advocates and their families to experience the hub ahead of Ireland’s recent opening encounter with Scotland.

In Ireland, one in 20 people have sensory issues such as ADHD, dyspraxia and SPD, while one in 50 have been diagnosed with autism.

The spectrum disorder, which includes Asperger’s, affects everyone differently, but is usually characterised by difficulty with social interaction and communication.

The stadium can be a very overwhelming environment for people with sensory issues and Aviva explained that they wanted to try and help to combat that.

 The Aviva Sensory Hub offers a multi-sensory space to both children and adults that can adapt to the individual needs of each user. It delivers a total sensory management system, which reduces sensory overload and disruption. The state-of-the-art sensory booth is free for any fan to use during their visit to the Aviva Stadium. 

The pioneer behind the installation of the Aviva Sensory Hub, Aviva Sponsorship Manager Lisa Bergin, said: “We are so proud to launch this initiative. The stadium is a world class venue, and we believe it should be open and inclusive to everyone, no matter what their needs.

“As a company, Aviva strives to promote a culture of diversity and inclusivity and we are delighted to work with everyone at the stadium to make this project come to life.”

 Speaking about his own family’s experience Republic of Ireland footballer, James McClean, said: “My two eldest kids love coming to see me play, but for my youngest daughter Willow, it’s a different experience.

“She doesn’t like crowds, or any very busy or noisy places. Football games, which are such a huge part of our lives, are quite overwhelming for her. A facility like the Aviva Sensory Hub will make all the difference for her and many other people with sensory needs when coming to matches.”

 Adam Harris, AsIAm Founder and Chief Executive Officer, added: “Growing up as an autistic person, the lack of any real understanding of the condition was frustrating, but Ireland has come a long way in making progress to cater for people with sensory issues. The Aviva Sensory Hub is brilliant for helping people who struggle with sensory issues to help centre themselves when they are feeling overwhelmed."

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