Officials from Miami International Airport (MIA) and the University of Miami-Nova Southeastern Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD) took part in an opening ceremony for MIA’s new Multi-Sensory Room. The facility provides a quiet area for young passengers with cognitive or developmental disabilities such as autism that provides a relaxing environment during the travel experience. Two families with special needs children were also in attendance for the grand opening.
Located just beyond Concourse D TSA security checkpoint #4, the room includes sensory-soothing fixtures such as an aquatic bubble tub, wall puzzles, cushioned seats and a light projector, all within a dimly lit space. The room, which is open seven days a week from 6am to 10pm, was created through a partnership between MIA and the Miami Beat Team from Leadership Miami’s Class of 2018, in consultation with UM-NSU CARD. Three Miami Beat Team members are MIA employees.
Lester Sola, MIA director and CEO commented: “The Multi-Sensory Room is our latest effort to make the travel experience easier and more enjoyable for families with special needs children. We applaud the Miami Beat Team and the UM-NSU CARD for their efforts to bring this project from concept to reality.”
The Multi-Sensory Room is part of MIA’s Airport Instruction and Readiness (MIAair) programme, which provides tours and materials to families with special-needs children so that anyone – regardless of their disability – can experience the magic and wonder of flight.
Please note: Parents and educators involved in caring for children with autism may be interested to read: Keeping Your Child with Autism Safe