Last month, we hosted a vision-impaired event at The Arc, in partnership with Bath University and it was a success. The purpose of the day was to involve young people with vision impairment in sport activities that are often perceived as out of reach and to start understanding the barriers and enablers for young people affected by vision impairment when participating to these activities.
Accessibility is something we are constantly looking to improve across all TCA sites. To be able to host Bath University’s project at The Arc was a pleasure. Bringing together a community of people impacted by vision impairment and enabling them to experience the thrill of climbing whilst providing valuable research is something we’re incredibly proud of and would like to continue to explore ways in which we can help further.
We received some great feedback from the event:
“I really liked that I didn’t have to listen whilst climbing. I was completely in the zone, because I was scared of the height, but this felt so beneficial to my mental health as I was forced to focus on each step and could not think about anything else. I now wish to do this regularly!”
“I really liked that staff at the climbing event never attempted to pet or talk to Bosley. I think it’s important that no assistance dogs get approached before and during the climbing event so that they stay calm and settled in one space on command, rather potentially get excited and start walking/running around etc which could get dangerous if the owner is climbing!”
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This climbing event was only one of the activities that have been carried out as part of a larger project trying to understand the barriers and enablers in key life transition periods for young people with vision impairment. If you’re interested in reading more, Bath University’s research study (Ethics reference number: 23078) funded by Guide Dogs is entitled ‘’Today and Tomorrow: living with vision impairment as a young person in the UK’’ and they are a team of researchers from the Department of Psychology at the University of Bath.