Participants in Winterville’s Social Recreation program now have new sensory and activity walls to enjoy, thanks to the efforts of Annie Geiger. Geiger, a high school senior, fundraised, planned, built, and installed the new structures as part of her Eagle Scout project for BSA (formerly known as the Boy Scouts of America).
“I have an older brother with autism, and the Autism Society of North Carolina has helped my family in so many ways,” said Geiger. “I wanted to help the Autism Society of North Carolina have the same impact on other people’s lives as they have had on my brother’s life.”
Geiger’s idea for sensory installments came from a friend, who was researching textured walls for elementary schools. Geiger expanded on the idea, coming up with designs to help with motor skills and sensory processing. “I got some inspiration from designs online, as well as thinking about what sensory activities that my brother or I would find entertaining,” she said, noting that there’s no singular blueprint for sensory structures available and that she had to create her vision from scratch. “I had a lot of help from my troop leaders with making decisions on measurements and scale to design a structure that fit the space at the building and could hold all the different sensory and motor skills activities.” Geiger created sensory and music boards for the outdoor space, sensory walls for the Quiet Space, and an activity wall for the Activity Room.
Once the boards were designed and built, Geiger led the installation. “There were around 20 scouts and adults there to help install, and it was so rewarding to see the whole thing come together after so much time spent on little bits of the project at a time,” she said.
The project has received rave reviews from the Social Recreation participants and staff. “We are so thankful for her decision to give back to us,” said Austyn Suits, Social Recreation Services Director. “Her work is beautiful and well-loved by our clients!”
Geiger, who hopes to major in science in college and become a researcher, is happy that Social Recreation’s participants are enjoying the work. “It feels incredibly fulfilling to see the finished product. Seeing the kids enjoy the completed project makes my work feel so much more rewarding. I’m happy I could help ASNC and everyone that benefits from this project.”
Tags: ASNC, autism, Autism Society of North Carolina, sensory activities, Social Recreation, Social Recreation Winterville