Special Populations
Accessibility and Special Populations

Special Populations Section
Section Coordinator: 954-357-8170
TTY Line: 954-537-2844
Fax: 954-357-5983
Email: SpecialPopulations@Broward.org

We want your feedback! Tell us how we are doing by filling out a Special Populations Customer Satisfaction Survey.

The Special Populations Section plans, develops, implements, and evaluates a variety of year-round recreation and leisure programs, special events, and services to meet the interests and needs of children, teens, adults, and seniors with disabilities. Programs are designed to develop, enhance, and/or maintain leisure skills, motor skills, socialization, and overall well-being as well as to promote fun and enjoyment. 

Types of Programs/Services Offered:

  • Social functions and events to provide opportunities for peer interaction in an appropriate social setting.
  • Sports and athletics to teach or enhance skills and to promote physical activity, friendly competition, fun, and success in individual, duo, and team activities.
  • Leisure education to explore, examine, and discover personal attitudes, interests, and potential opportunities through experiential discussions and initiatives that focus on leisure awareness and resources in order to promote healthy independent recreation and leisure lifestyles.
  • Physical fitness programs to teach and improve general fitness in a group setting.
  • General recreation to provide for the discovery and experience of a variety of activities that promote learning, skill development, creativity, life skills enhancement, and enjoyment.
  • Facilitate inclusion by working directly with potential participants, significant others, and Division staff to provide, as needed, resources, assistance, training, modifications, and/or equipment that will enable persons with disabilities to actively participate in any Division-wide program and events.

Ongoing Programs


The Special Populations Section offers two Tuesday bowling programs: 

  • Pins 'n' Pals - for ages 13 to 25 - 4:40-6 p.m.
  • Adult Bowling - for ages 18 and up - 6:30-8:45 p.m.

Bowling programs take place at Strikers Family Sports Center in Sunrise. The cost is $5.50 for two games and bowling shoes, if needed. These bowling programs are for persons with various disabilities and are offered as a weekly program. Participants must be fairly independent and able to follow basic instructions. Consistent attendance is required at this ongoing program. Preregistration is required as space is limited. To register or for further information call Special Populations at 954-357-8170 or TTY 954-537-2844, or email SpecialPopulations@Broward.org.

Yoga class participants 
Yoga Classes
These classes are free for adults who are blind or visually impaired. Participants will work with volunteers learning the art of yoga as taught by our certified volunteer instructors. All skill levels are welcome.
Classes are held on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month beginning on January 9, 2016, and running through November 12, 2016. Class time is 10 a.m. to noon. Classes are held at the Lighthouse of Broward, 650
N. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Reservations are required for each class as space is limited. To reserve your spot or for more information, call 954-357-8170 or TTY 954-537-2844, or email SpecialPopulations@Broward.org.

Tandem bike riding with sight challenged rider in the back seat 

Tandem Bike Programs

Programs are designed for persons who are blind or visually impaired, ages 18 and up.

Skill Development Classes

Together with a volunteer partner, learn basic biking skills, safety, bicycle mechanics, trust-building, and group riding etiquette. This program also provides an opportunity for physical activity, fun, and socialization. Classes run one day a week for one and a half to two hours for a five- or six-week session.

Leisure Rides

These bimonthly (six times a year) tandem bicycle rides bring together graduates of the skill development class and tandem volunteers for a few hours of riding and socializing through various Broward County parks.

For more information, call Special Populations at 954-357-8170 or TTY 954-537-2844, or email SpecialPopulations@Broward.org.

Take the Stage! Step in Time

This free, fun, active, dance program will teach various styles  and elements of dance, from traditional step dancing to hip-hop, and even jazz, for youth ages 8 to 13 with developmental disabilities. The program is designed to teach dance while focusing on enhancing coordination, rhythm, socialization, self-awareness, self-expression, and confidence. Participants will be assisted by student  volunteers from St. Thomas Aquinas High School as they explore the universal language of dance together. Each class will include a warm-up, dance techniques and steps, rhythm and coordination activities, a social circle, and cool down. Participants will also work on a routine that may be performed for family and friends at the end of the program. This is not a drop-in program - consistent attendance is required, as each week participants will build on skills they learned in the prior week's class. Preregistration is required. Saturdays, 9:30 to 10:30 a.m., October 1 through November 12 at Plantation Central Park. For more information, call Special Populations at 954-357-8170 or email SpecialPopulations@Broward.org.


Social Events

Make your reservations early as space is limited. - Please include participant’s name(s), the number of chaperones who will be attending, and the contact phone number and/or email address.

Please note: Direct supervision of participants is not provided at any dances or socials.


Free Seasonal Dances for Adults With Development Disabilities

Seasonal Dance Banner 

Reservations are required. Make your reservations early as space is limited.  Please include participant’s name(s), the number of chaperones who will be attending, and the contact phone number and/or email address.

Fall Frolic at Tree Tops Park - Friday, October 21, 2016, 7 to 10 p.m.
This free dance, for adults 18 and up with developmental disabilities, will feature deejay music, dancing, socializing, and refreshments. The fun starts at 7 p.m. and continues to 10 p.m. Reservations are required. For more information or to make a reservation, call 954-357-8170 or email SpecialPopulations@Broward.org.

Free Socials for Adult Mental Health Consumers


Friday Night Social at Tree Tops Park - Friday, September 30, 2016, 7 to 9:30 p.m.
This free social/dance, for adults ages 18 and up living with mental illness, is co-sponsored by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Broward County. The social includes deejay music, socializing, dancing, refreshments, and more. For more information, call 954-357-8170 or NAMI at 954-316-9907.

Free Teen Socials



Reservations are required. Please include participant’s name(s), date of birth, the number of chaperones who will be attending, and the contact phone number and/or email address.
Western Hoedown at Tree Tops Park - Friday, November 18, 2016, 7 to 9:30 p.m.
Middle and high school students ages 13 to 22 with developmental disabilities are invited to kick up their boots and wear cowboy/cowgirl clothing and hats to this free social/dance. The evening's activities include deejay music, socializing, dancing, and refreshments. Reservations are required. To make a reservation or for additional information, contact the Special Populations Section at 954-357-8170 or by emailing SpecialPopulations@Broward.org.
Recreation and Leisure Resources

The Special Populations Section prepares a biannual listing of Recreation and Leisure Programs and Activities for Special Populations. This resource lists community-based programs designed specifically for persons with disabilities. It also contains a list of all municipal recreation departments in Broward County, designating a contact person and contact information, as well as a listing of accessible pools, beaches, and playgrounds.
View and print this document.pdfView and print this document.pdf  This publication can be made available by request in large print, as a digital recording, or in Braille.