Sensory Room Unveiled at Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE)
May 5, 2018
Only the third Airport in the World to provide this facility for air travelers
Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE), in collaboration with the Arc of Lehigh and Northampton Counties have teamed-up to construct a “Sensory Room” – only the third in the world – for air travelers with autism and other intellectual and developmental disabilities.
“Unveiling this sensory room is an example of our airport being an aviation leader within the region and our commitment to creating a comfortable environment for all passengers,” said Tom Stoudt, Executive Director, Lehigh-Northampton Airport Authority.
Located in the Wilfred M. “Wiley” Post Departure Building, the room is equipped with mondo flooring, low frequency lighting, mounted projector and other sensory equipment.
“The sensory room will help reduce stress and anxiety for travelers with sensory sensitivities,” said Karen Shoemaker, The Arc’s Executive Director. “This unique space will positively impact many families who travel through the Lehigh Valley each year.”
This project has been on the radar for several years, but received a significant boost from many sponsors that made this Sensory Room a reality.
“ABE and the Arc are extremely grateful this initiative received overwhelming support from sponsors that immediately realized they would be making a difference,” said Stoudt.
Lead Sponsors: Mass Mutual / Pennwood
SAM Service Access & Management Magellan HealthCare PA Link
The Leadership Trust XPO Logistics Fun and Function
“PennWood recognizes and appreciates the services that the Arc provides for our community and we are very proud to be the lead sponsor for the sensory room. The Special Care community is one that is important to PennWood Financial Group,” said Jeffrey R. Kurtz, General Agent, PennWood Financial Group.
“Having the ability to participate with the Arc in this sensory room project brings together our shared commitment to the special care community. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the Arc.”
Saturday’s event was scheduled as part of the 4th Annual “Wings for All®” at Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE). “Wings for All®”, one of The Arc’s national initiatives, is an airport rehearsal specially designed for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other Intellectual/Developmental disabilities, their families and aviation professionals.
The program provides families with the opportunity to practice entering the airport, obtaining boarding passes, going through security, and boarding a plane. Wings for All® also gives airport, airline, Transportation Security Administration professionals, and other personnel the opportunity to observe, interact, and deliver their services in a structured, learning environment.