Sensory Activation Vehicle

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The Sensory Activation Vehicle (SAV) is outfitted to provide a safe and calming experience for neurodivergent individuals, those with PTSD or others who might become overwhelmed at a large event. It is equipped with sound-proofing, low lighting, air conditioning, as well as tactile activities. The purpose of the vehicle is to allow those who need a space to relax and decompress, allowing them to return to the event when ready. 

The vehicle was paid for by donations raised through a fundraiser led by Village President Sheena Collum in 2022 and a sponsorship from Words Bookstore. 

South Orange residents and SOMA organizations may request use of the SAV through the SOPD Community Relations department by submitting an application request form to nlonero@southorange.org and jalbino@southorange.org. Requests must be received at least 15 days prior to event. 

We request that all interested parties read the policy and requirements below, as well as the Volunteer Guidelines, to ensure safe and effective use of the SAV, before submitting an application request form. The vehicle will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Sensory Activation Vehicle Policy 

1. Purpose and Scope

This policy serves to regulate the private use of South Orange Village’s Sensory Activation Vehicle (SAV) during periods when it is not in the care, custody, and control of the municipality. The policy applies to any South Orange individual, group, or organization seeking to use the van for private purposes, excluding municipal activities.

 

2. Definitions

  • Sensory Activation Vehicle: A mobile unit equipped with various sensory stimulation equipment and resources intended to provide therapeutic and educational experiences.
  • Private Use: Any use of the sensory activation vehicle that is not officially organized or sanctioned by the municipality for public use.

 

3. Eligibility and Application

3.1 Individuals or organizations interested in utilizing the SAV for private use must agree to comply with all terms and conditions outlined in this policy.

3.2 Applicants must submit a request form, indicating event/purpose, intended dates, and locations for the SAV's use and designed for supervising/attending the SAV during the event period.

3.3 The municipality will review each application and grant permission, at its sole discretion, based on the availability of the vehicle, the merit of the proposed activity, and adherence to the policy's guidelines.

 

4. Conditions for Private Use

4.1 The SAV may only be used for activities related to sensory stimulation, therapy, education for neurodivergent individuals. The SAV is not to be used for entertainment purposes.

4.2 Users must sign the application agreement with the municipality, acknowledging that they will be solely responsible for any damage or loss to the SAV and its equipment during the private use period.

4.3 The van's exterior, including any municipal branding or decals, must not be altered or defaced in any way during private use.

4.4 Private users must adhere to maximum occupancy requirements:

  • No more than 5 children at one time.
  • When adults are present in the van, no more than 2 children and 2 adults at one time.

4.5 SAV must be able to be parked within 100 ft. of electrical outlet for use. 

4.6 SAV cannot be moved by any member of the public, delivery and parking of the SAV will be handled by SOPD or another municipal employee as designated by SOPD and approved by Village Administration. 

4.7 SAV must be supervised at all times when open for use/event. 

4.8 Minors must be accompanied by an adult to enter the SAV. Small children must have an adult parent or caregiver with them inside the SAV. Adults and caregivers of older children must remain at the van if not inside with the minor child. 

4.9 The rear gate is for wheelchair access and must be closed at all times when not in use. 

4.10 The responsible party must be available to meet SOPD upon delivery if the SAV for an overview of operations. 

4.11 Adhere to the following steps when preparing the SAV for pickup: 

  • Disconnect and roll up the extension cords, then place them in the SAV.
  • Close the rear gate and lock it with the two supplied padlocks.
  • Lock the side door:
  • Open the door.
  • Insert the key in the top lock cylinder.
  • Turn the key to the locked position, BUT don’t close the door yet.
  • Place the keys in the SAV, on the floor.
  • Close the door. Confirm it is locked before leaving.

5. Scheduling and Prioritization

5.1 Scheduling of the sensory activation vehicle for private use will be on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to availability.

5.2 The municipality reserves the right to prioritize municipal activities, events, and programs over private use requests.

5.3 Application request forms must be received at least 15 days prior to the event date. 

 

6. Supervision and Security

6.1 A designated representative from the private user's organization must be present during the entire duration of the private use.

6.2 Private users must ensure the security of the van and its contents at all times. The vehicle must be locked when not in use and under supervision.

 

7. Compliance

7.1 Failure to adhere to the policy's terms and conditions may result in the denial of future requests for private use of the sensory activation van.

 

8. Amendments and Updates

8.1 The municipality reserves the right to amend or update this policy as deemed necessary. Any changes will be communicated to all eligible users and posted on the municipality's website.

 

9. Contact Information

For inquiries or to submit a private use request for the SAV, please contact the South Orange Police Department, Community Affairs Division by emailing jalbino@southorange.org and nlonero@southorange.org