A City for Everyone: Draft Inclusive Brisbane Plan 2019-2029 - Theme 4: Enjoy

By 2029 Brisbane will be a city for everybody - known worldwide for embracing all ages, abilities and cultures.

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A city where everyone can enjoy exciting lifestyle and leisure opportunities

I can participate in sports and recreational activities that improve my health and wellbeing.

Brisbane’s many lifestyle and leisure activities, such as library services, active and healthy programs, creative festivals and events, enrich our city and showcase the diverse communities that position us as a New World City.

They are also where people connect, create, learn and share. Interacting with others in a friendly environment strengthens social networks and reduces our risk of feeling isolated.

By 2029, people of all ages, abilities and cultures will have access to exciting events and vibrant local markets, with better facilities and venues for everyone to enjoy. Council’s strong program of events and activities will be even more inclusive and welcoming for everyone through possible initiatives such as the provision of portable hearing loops at outdoor events and exploration of partnerships for an accessible sports hub that provides professional facilities for emerging and elite athletes of all abilities. These opportunities will be supported by programs that link residents to new activities beyond their existing networks.

Council will partner with local communities to create connections between cultures and communities through potential initiatives such as intergenerational events and activities that also build relationships between newly arrived migrants and longer-term residents.

Health and wellbeing

I can find out about and take part in cultural and leisure activities across Brisbane.

Most Brisbane residents are fortunate to experience good health and wellbeing but research suggests 45% of Australians will experience a mental health condition in their lifetime [xv]. Leisure activities and healthy lifestyles can alleviate poor mental and physical wellbeing. Physical inactivity remains the fifth leading cause of preventable death in Australia and people with disability are less likely to participate in sport, recreation or cultural activities [xvi]. Making sports fields more accessible, supporting clubs to be more inclusive of diverse cultures and providing exercise programs for seniors, will all yield positive benefits for our community.

Signature City Festivals such as the Brisbane Festival and Valley Fiesta use Council’s event accessibility guidelines to maximise inclusion. Council is now proposing to update the checklist so event planners can better consider the needs of people with diverse cultural backgrounds and seniors. Tailoring activities for people with perceptual and learning difficulties is also a growing focus, with solutions such as chill-out rooms at concerts already opening new avenues for involvement.

While Council will continue to provide and fund specialised initiatives such as seniors entertainment, multicultural classes in libraries and wheelchair sports, organisational efforts will concentrate on greater inclusion of all groups in mainstream programs. This could be as simple as supporting people to bring translators to active and healthy activities, or expanding Council’s library catalogue to be responsive to diverse languages.

Celebrating living cultures

Brisbane boasts enviable cultural experiences that celebrate our multicultural identity. Council is exploring new ways to tell our ever-changing story and share the unique history of the land’s traditional custodians, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. It is an essential part of growing an inclusive Brisbane, especially for newly arrived residents who state that understanding Australian culture helps them to feel more welcome.

Future possibilities

Between 2019 and 2029, Council is considering a focus on the following strategies and possible actions.

Make Council events and activities more accessible and welcoming for everyone.

  • Provide greater experiences for residents not able to attend free citywide signature events, by potentially live-streaming concerts and events to nursing homes, aged care and disability support organisations.
  • Partner with community organisations to update Council’s event accessibility guidelines so that festival and event organisers better consider the needs of visitors from diverse cultural backgrounds and people with learning and perceptual difficulties (for example, by using more symbols than written English in signage and by reducing bright strobe lighting for those with sensory needs).
  • Provide portable hearing loops at more Council-funded events.
  • Partner with community groups, universities and all levels of government to explore accessible sports facilities for emerging and elite athletes of all abilities.
  • Partner with key sports facility lessees to open up sports grounds to cultural organisations to run their own fixtures in off-seasons.
  • Facilitate the provision of supportive equipment for people with disability to trial new activities, such as swimming caps at pools that allow vision-impaired swimmers to know when to turn at the end of a lane.
  • Partner with community organisations to pilot sensory and tactile library spaces for visitors with specific needs such as autism or blindness.
  • Provide improvements to the online library catalogue so it is more accessible for non-English-speaking residents.
  • Provide all recipients of Council’s accessibility grants with the Guide to Inclusion so their physically enhanced facilities are supported by inclusive services and management practices.

Develop linking programs to transition more people to mainstream events and activities.

  • Provide virtual and/or augmented reality experiences of active and healthy programs to encourage participation by people who haven’t been involved before.
  • Partner with community organisations to promote and deliver active and healthy programs that combine exercise with daily routines such as shopping centre walks, particularly for people with limited mobility.
  • Partner with community organisations and fitness providers to deliver training in using park equipment for seniors, culturally diverse communities and people with disability.

Create connections between communities.

  • Facilitate intergenerational events and volunteer-based activities that build relationships across age groups.
  • Facilitate young people from diverse cultural groups to develop resources, training activities and events that build relationships in partnership with community elders and leaders.

Ongoing commitments

Council libraries will continue to provide opportunities to showcase authors who are older, have disability or are from diverse cultural backgrounds. Libraries will also continue to explore new ways to engage all residents in learning, such as storytelling to children with autism or those that don’t speak English. Library collections in languages other than English will continue.

Council will provide opportunities to engage with leading-edge inclusive technologies through digital festivals and events that enhance residents’ lives (e.g. through increased mobility or communication).

Funding from Council will expand opportunities that promote inclusive participation in sport and active lifestyles through the 2019 INAS Global Games for athletes with an intellectual impairment.

Partnering with community organisations to tailor activities to enable more people to be active and healthy will continue to link to ongoing opportunities to join community programs.

Council will continue to partner with communities to deliver activities that strengthen mental health for all residents, provide accessible outdoor exercise equipment and community gardens, and train activity providers on how best to support participation of people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.

Cross-cultural events that build relationships between newly arrived migrant community leaders and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander elders will continue to bring communities together across the city.

Council will continue to fund activities to improve physical health and fitness through Council’s Active Parks.

Council will also support community groups to improve their capacity to provide inclusive and accessible services, and continue to deliver the Lord Mayor’s Seniors’ Christmas Parties, Lord Mayor’s Seniors’ Gala and City Entertainment concerts. Support for the 50 Plus Centre, access to community facilities, halls and library meeting rooms, and provision of learning activities such as Auslan story time, free computer classes for people on low incomes and mobile and home-based library services will all continue.

Council grant programs will also continue, as will the provision of Disability Partnership, Cultural Diversity and Seniors Development officers to support community organisations on local community issues. Immunisation programs, water safety and first aid courses will all remain as standard Council business.

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Last updated:10 December 2019