For ages now LOOK has been dreaming of a summer festival to bring visually impaired young people and their families together for some good times and celebrations in the sun!
We wanted to create an opportunity for young visually impaired people and their families to spend a prolonged period of time together with our fabulous visually impaired mentors, so as to get to know each other and ask all the questions there is never time enough to explore. We wanted to do all this in a relaxed and peaceful setting where children could have the chance to roam and play freely and parents could grab an opportunity to take some time out while the young ones are kept busy.
We wanted to mix up the magic of our recent Getting Great at the Everyday! Family Weekend, which saw young people and their families taking part in a range of independence and confidence workshops over a weekend at New College Worcester (NCW), with some of the relaxation know-how gained from our wellbeing weekends.
Add to this some more opportunities to get creative with our wonderful visually impaired artists taking the lead, some inspirational talks from VI people with a tale to tell and some good ole fashioned dancing. And there you have it: the plan for LOOKfest is born.
Making LOOKFest accessible
We hear all the time from young people and parents who are fed up with feeling excluded because activities aren’t accessible, or because the general expectation of what is possible for a VI child is set too low. Den building? Too dangerous! Circus Skills? Impossible! Camping? Accessibility Nightmare! Well at LOOK we believe in finding out what people want and then finding ways of making it happen. So we are working hard to make all of this doable, enjoyable and comfortable. We have a fabulous pool of talented and enthusiastic mentors and volunteers to help us and we are now at full steam ahead, pulling the whole thing together.
Visiting the LOOKFest site
We recently visited the site – which is just a couple of fields with a beautiful view at the moment, and started to plan where the marquees and tipis are going to go, how we are going to orientate people and make it possible for our guests to navigate the whole site using our guide ropes and audible trails. Jazzy the guide dog had a great time running free in the woods and LOOK staff had fun imagining giant sandpits, mud kitchens, dens and more.
We can’t wait to start making it all a reality and we really hope to see you there!