Making air travel more friendly for kids with autism

Kelowna airport to host special tour to familiar those with autism about using YLW

On Nov. 19, the Canucks Autism Network and Kelowna International Airport will team up to host the first YLW Accessibility Tour for families living with autism.

The tour will take families through the entire pre-flight process, including entering the airport, waiting in line, passing through security and boarding a plane.

The Canucks Autism Network’s I CAN Fly program was developed in partnership with Vancouver International Airport in 2014.

Due to anxiety or sensory sensitivities, children with autism can be overwhelmed by the pre-flight experience. This can present a significant challenge for families with autism to successfully and comfortably navigate the airport environment. By providing families with a simulated experience, the program will better prepare children with autism for what to expect at the airport.

In addition to the tour, the I CAN Fly program includes a resource kit that features a step-by-step storybook outlining the airport routine, an interactive checklist allowing travellers to check off each step as it is completed, an airport “road map” for families to follow on their journey, and helpful tips for travel.

The program also aims to educate airport employees and volunteers on how to accommodate individuals with autism and better anticipate challenging situations.

Related story: Sensory-friendly shopping hour for children with autism at Toys’R’Us stores

After launching the I CAN Fly program at YVR in 2014, more than 300 individuals have benefited from the Accessibility Tour in Vancouver. With the program now in its fourth year, program is expanding the program to Kelowna.

“The Accessibility Tour is a truly unique resource for children with autism to familiarize themselves with the airport process,” said Katy Harandi, the network’s president and CEO. “We are confident that the I CAN Fly program at YLW will open a new world of possibilities for families living with autism in the Kelowna community.

Families with autism interested in participating in the I CAN Fly Accessibility Tour at YLW can sign up at canucksautism.ca/events. Participation is exclusive to CAN members. Families can sign up for a CAN membership for $25 per individual with autism per year at canucksautism.ca/join. The event will have limited access due to security restrictions.

To report a typo, email: edit@kelownacapnews.com.


@KelownaCapNews
newstips@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Majority of Salmon Arm shoppers aren’t objecting to mandatory masks

Two of the businesses requiring masks say most customers don’t mind but one person spit at employee

School District #83 asked to partner on proposed Sicamous sports complex

District of Sicamous wishes to apply for $600,000 infrastructure project grant

‘Schools are healthy’: IH medical health officer

Children have a low risk of catching and spreading COVID-19

North Okanagan-Shuswap MP: Throne speech shows failures in COVID-19 response

Mel Arnold critical of Trudeau government’s throne speech Wednesday

2020 overdose death toll rises to 73 in the Okanagan

Just under half of the deaths occurred in Kelowna

BC Liberal Leader talks drug addiction in the Lower Mainland

Drug addiction and public safety a top priority says Andrew Wilkinson

Kamloops Mounties happened upon alleged gang-related robbery, kidnapping

Michael Mathieson is charged with armed robbery, unlawful confinement and kidnapping

Pandemic derails CP Holiday Train

Canadian Pacific will work to get donations to food banks while also producing an online music concert

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Interior Health reports five new COVID-19 cases

Across the region, 34 cases are active

Vanderhoof’s Brian Frenkel takes on top job in tough times

We can get through this, new local government leader says

Penticton quadruple murder trial begins in Kelowna next month

John Brittain, 69, is facing three counts of first-degree murder and one count of second-degree murder

Historic BC Tree Fruits head office in Okanagan for sale

The company’s CEO said the decision was necessary due to a fickle fruit market

Most Read