The North Carolina Zoo is Certified Sensory Inclusive

New training with KultureCity creates more inclusive environment for people with sensory sensitivities                                                                     

Asheboro, N.C. – March 14, 2019 - The North Carolina Zoo has partnered with the non-profit KultureCity as a Certified Sensory Inclusive venue. This new initiative will promote an accommodating experience for all guests with sensory issues.

KultureCity is a worldwide, leading non-profit recognized for using their resources to revolutionize and effect change in the community for those with sensory needs.

The certification process included training for the Zoo’s staff on how to recognize guests with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. Sensory bags, equipped with noise-canceling headphones, fidget tools, verbal cue cards and weighted lap pads will be available to all guests who may feel overwhelmed by the environment. There will also be designated ‘Quiet Zones’ welcome to all who need a calm space due to sensory overload.

Sensitivities or challenges with sensory regulation may be experienced by individuals with autism, dementia, post-traumatic stress disorder and other similar conditions. With its new certification, the Zoo is now better prepared to assist guests with sensory sensitivities in having the most comfortable experience possible while at the Zoo.

Before visiting, families can download the free KultureCity App to see what sensory features are available and where they can access them. There is also a downloadable map of sensory areas available on the Zoo's website.

“We are very excited to offer this program to enhance our inclusion efforts for all guests,” said the Zoo’s Guest Service Officer Jamie Merchel.

“To know that you soon will be able to see families attend the North Carolina Zoo with their loved ones who have a sensory challenge and who were not able to previously attend is truly a heartwarming moment. It’s amazing that the Zoo is willing to go the extra mile to ensure that everyone, no matter their ability, is included in their community,” said Executive Director of KultureCity Traci Johnson.

More information is also on the Visit Section of the North Carolina Zoo’s website