Sherlock Center celebrates 30 years with a night at the zoo

An aunt and nephew enjoy their ice cream in front of two camels.

The Sherlock Center celebrated its 30th anniversary, awarded five Access for All Abilities Mini Grants and cooled off with an ice cream social at “An Evening at Roger Williams Park Zoo” on Thursday, June 20.

ZooCamp Director Beth Caporelli and Director of Guest Engagement Leigh Picard joined us to speak about the impact of receiving past Sherlock Center mini-grants – in 2019 to install a sensory pathway and in 2012 to adapt materials and provide staff training to support campers with disabilities – and about the importance of accessibility and inclusivity at the zoo. 

Special congratulations to our 2024 grant recipients:

  • The Collaborative in Warren, which will purchase a removable ramp for the main entryway at its new program location and make improvements to its restroom to be ADA-compliant. 
  • Gnome Surf, which will build a four-part disability awareness strengthening program mandatory for all instructors with topics including autism awareness, sensitivity awareness, child safeguarding and more.
  • Newport Art Museum, which will create participatory, inclusive spaces in galleries and quiet areas with resources such as tactile displays, didactics, iPads with artist-featured videos, musical instruments and sensory bins. 
  • Providence Public Library, which will purchase and install sound-dampening panels in program and classroom spaces to improve acoustics for all program participants.
  • Refugee Dream Center, which will purchase two specialized beach chairs tailored for individuals with mobility impairments and establish a program so community members with disabilities can borrow them free of charge.