top of page

High Schooler Installs Universal Changing Tables and Sensory Equipment in Local Community Center

Written by: Kim Kirkwood-Boulter, Changing Spaces Campaign

April 24, 2024

High schooler Hannah Thomason has been a Girl Scout since first grade. As a senior, Hannah decided to try to shoot for the top award in Girl Scouts: the Gold Award. In order to achieve this, she had to help fix a problem in her community, or make a lasting change in the world.

She did not have to look far for her inspiration. Hannah's mom is a pediatric physical therapist, which gave Hannah unique insight into what it could be like to live with a disability. As a teen, Hannah volunteered with her local Spirit League, Special Olympics and her school's Partner's Club. "This has been such a huge part of my life and the athletes have made me the person I am today.”

Hannah Thomason wearing her Girl Scouts sash.

Because of her experiences, Hannah knew she wanted to do a project to help people with disabilities. She created a survey with the Oklahoma Pediatric Therapy Center to get ideas of how she could make her community more accessible. Based on the feedback from the survey, she developed her project called "Encouraging Inclusion". The project had three parts: Part One: installing two powered, height-adjustable adult-size changing tables in her community Part Two: providing training to staff at her local parks and recreation department on how to serve individuals with autism and Part Three: donating sensory equipment to her local community center.

Hannah sitting on the height-adjustable adult size changing table

she donated to the Community Center in Yukon, Oklahoma.

To purchase the universal changing tables, she worked with Woven Life, Inc., a nonprofit organization in Oklahoma, who provided grant funding. One changing table was placed in a restroom at the Community Center and one at the City Splash pool.

"I did a fundraiser through Girl Scouts for the sensory equipment and with the help of my community, I raised over $300 to purchase items for a sensory room." "I raised money by spreading the word about my project on social media. I asked the people of my community to donate to my cause to aid in purchasing the sensory room equipment.”

Sensory items that Hannah donated to the Yukon Community center.

When asked what drives her, she replied, "Seeing how special people with disabilities are and seeing the way our world is not built for them in some ways drives me to be an advocate for them."

When asked what her plans are for the future, Hannah shared, "I will always be an advocate for individuals with disabilities and I plan to continue my passion in my future career. My goal is to be a pediatric occupational therapist and combine my creative traits with my love for working with people with special needs."

Hannah pictured in front of the Yukon Community Center.

Hannah's project is a great example to follow. She has shown us that with a little determination, anyone can make their community a more inclusive place.

If you would like to get involved in advocating for universal changing tables, visit our Advocacy Toolkit page on the Changing Spaces Campaign website, and connect with a Changing Spaces Campaign state chapter leader.

80 views0 comments


bottom of page