Last weekend the city of Sevastopol celebrated the opening of the new stadium. After reconstruction, the former sport complex has become the first stadium in the city that meets requirements of the Ukrainian Premiere League, European Cup and UEFA.

From the very beginning, the local Union of Disabled People kept their fingers on the pulse and consulted the development company on the best practices in creating accessible sports facilities. As a result, the new stadium provides 17 seats for disabled fans (plus 17 seats for their assistants), accessible toilets and accessible ticket office.

Vadim Kashtan, the chief architect of the new stadium commented on the facilities for disabled fans:

‘The stadium provides the following accessible facilities: ramps near ticket offices, entrance to the administrative building, including conference room, press room, VIP zone. Unfortunately, since the stadium was reconstructed and not built from scratch, the zone with accessible seats in not sheltered. But the football club promised to find some solution to provide more comfort for disabled fans.’

More than 20 disabled fans attended the opening match to support their team and test the new facilities and services at the stadium. The festive atmosphere was supported by nice weather and fantastic fans’ support. The team also contributed to the general mood by winning the game.

During the break, the FC President Aleksandr Krasilnikov came up to say hello to disabled fans and to shake their hands. After the game, the happy fans were brought home by special low-floored buses provided by the club. 

Inspired and supported by CAFE, disabled fans from Sevastopol are going to launch their own fan club. We encourage all disabled fans (with any disabilities) to join this initiative. For more details please write to Aleksandr Sidelnikov,  project coordinator in Sevastopol, at [email protected].

A version of this article is also available in Russian and Polish.

Published 02/08/2011