DNR Commissioner Places Priority on Outdoor Recreational Opportunities for the Mobility Impaired

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources has announced its renewed commitment to providing hunting, fishing, and other outdoor recreational opportunities for those with mobility impairments.

More than 2.2 million Georgians have a disability, and of that, 14 percent of those are mobility related.

Given the number of Georgians impacted, the Georgia DNR has put an increased focus on creating adaptive outdoor opportunities for people across the state.

As a space that has long been viewed as out of reach for those with mobility challenges, Georgia DNR’s Outdoors Beyond Barriers adaptive program will provide tools, resources, and access points for all Georgians.

“Outdoors Beyond Barriers seeks to educate, encourage, and empower Georgians with mobility impairments to connect with nature,” said Walter Rabon, Commissioner of Georgia DNR. “With March being National Disability Awareness Month, we want to ensure everyone is aware of the efforts being made by our department to remove obstacles associated with getting outdoors for those who are mobility impaired.”

Georgia DNR’s Outdoors Beyond Barriers program will provide gateways for mobility impaired Georgians to enjoy hunting and fishing, while learning the skills and tools needed to become independent users of Georgia’s natural resources.

The Department plans to grow the program by hosting hunting and fishing events in each of the department’s six regions around the state on public lands and fishing areas, while also providing additional opportunities in partnership with private landowners throughout Georgia.

Rabon pointed out that public-private partnerships will be critical as the DNR moves forward, and they are thankful for the landowners who have already stepped up, volunteering to host events on their personal properties.

Additionally, Rabon said the Georgia DNR will continue to offer free Action Trackchairs for those with mobility impairments thanks to the partnership with the Aimee Copeland Foundation’s All Terrain Georgia initiative.

He said the program has been a success, with over 250 reservations made in 2023 at 10 State Parks and Historic Sites Division locations this spring.

Those interested in reserving an Action Trackchair can go online to https://gastateparks.org/Accessibility/TrackChairs.