Family raises money to build very special playground

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ROCKY RIVER, Ohio – A Rocky River mom is taking on a big project. She’s trying to raise enough money to build a special playground for children with disabilities.

“She may never walk or talk but we definitely don’t believe that.  Like, we feel at 16 she’s gonna be public speaking and saying, ‘This is what happens when your parents do not give up on you’,” said Ann Butler, Elle’s mother.

Last year, 10-month-old Elle Butler was diagnosed with a rare disorder. She suffers from a chromosome deficiency that may prevent her from ever walking and talking. Her mother, Ann Butler, wants her daughters to be able to play together and decided to create a park that would be accessible to all children, regardless of their disability.

The Butler family is attempting to privately raise $1.5 million to build a park and playground everyone can enjoy. The park would be called “Elle’s Enchanted Forest” and would be located on the Rocky River City Hall campus.

The proposed playground would be handicap-accessible and offer various other features.

“Children and adults with autism need different needs and we are hopefully going to have a liberty swing where you are able to ride the wheelchair right onto the swing, because some people can’t be picked up out of their wheelchair.  And we are hopefully gonna have a roller slide were children and adults who do not have trunk control are able to lay on it and roll on it and still get the sensation of sliding.”

Butler hopes to start construction on the  new playground sometime in August but she’s also having a special 5k fundraiser to make all this happen.

“Because of all the limitations we wanted to create a place for all families to have the same opportunities to have to be able to play without limits,” said Butler.

 Click here for more on Elle’s Enchanted Forest, including how you can donate.

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