into the social and natural environment with novel activities they do not yet participate in.
maj – oktober 2023
Maintaining and strengthening mental health is crucial for individuals with physical and/or mental disabilities, as they are often faced with additional challenges and barriers in achieving their goals and meeting their needs. They are more exposed to stress, anxiety, and depression and may experience social exclusion, loneliness, and inequality, which negatively affects their mental health.
Therefore, it is important that individuals with disabilities have appropriate support in maintaining and strengthening their mental health. This support should be tailored to their individual needs and abilities and take into account their specific challenges.
Workshops mainly focus on young adults with special needs (with developmental disorders, learning disabilities, autistic disorders, emotional and behavioral disorders …).
COOKT in collaboration with the Association of Psychologists of Krapina-Zagorje County
The workshops are centered around the following techniques:
Sensory integration is the brain’s ability to combine various sensory information received from the environment and use it to form meaningful and coordinated responses. A sensory park is designed to promote sensory integration through various sensory experiences such as touch, sound, sight, smell, and taste.
Sensory parks are beneficial for people with certain disabilities as they help in developing sensory integration, which improves their motor and cognitive abilities as well as their ability to manage emotions and behavior.
We develop and conduct workshops in the sensory park for people with special needs, taking into account their individual needs and abilities, and adapting sensory experiences according to their needs. This includes the use of adapted sensory materials, adapted lighting, sound and temperature, as well as the use of adapted sensory activities.
June – December 2023
activating all senses in the sensory park to encourage experiencing, perceiving, and discovering oneself and nature.
As part of this module, COOKT will purchase sensory tools for the sensory park. These tools will be used permanently even after the project is completed.
We are developing and implementing nature-based activities that are highly beneficial for people with disabilities (as they contribute to improving their physical and mental health as well as their overall well-being). In our workshops, we organize hiking, Nordic walking, and therapeutic horseback riding.
Hiking is one of the most accessible nature-based activities for people with special needs, as we can adjust the trails to their abilities. The initial trails are flat and without obstacles, gradually introducing minor challenges such as steeper climbs and uneven terrain. During hiking, individuals move at their own pace, making it an excellent activity for developing physical endurance and strengthening muscles.
Nordic walking is a popular nature-based activity that involves the use of special poles, which provide better control and weight distribution. Nordic walking is great for strengthening the heart and circulatory system, improving physical endurance, and strengthening muscles. It also improves balance and coordination.
Therapeutic horseback riding is designed for people with special needs who have difficulty with movement or sensation. Riding a horse helps individuals better connect with nature and develop a better sense of rhythm and balance. Various therapeutic techniques are used during horseback riding, helping to improve muscle tone, coordination, and other motor skills.
COOKT (sports and health education teacher and personnel qualified through the project activities with collaboration with Faculty of Kinesiology and Center Ritam with horse in Stubičke Toplice)
2x, September 2023
Sports activities in nature for people with disabilities: