Disability Week Activities 2010

Student wearing vision restricting goggles

College Initiative Helps Promote Disability Awareness

Kensington and Chelsea College teamed up with several leading local and national disability organisations recently to host an activity packed awareness week.

The college based event kicked-off at the Hortensia Campus with a range of stalls offering free advice and information about several types of disability including visual and physical impairments, deafness, dyslexia and mental health.

Throughout the week the stalls, which included The Royal National Institute For Deaf People, Action Disability Kensington and Chelsea and Enhance the UK visited each of the college sites.

Staff and students were also encouraged to take part in disability awareness activities including navigating an obstacle course in a wheelchair and trying on vision restricting goggles. Those testing the goggles experienced 20 different types of visual impairment including tunnel vision and blurred vision.

There were also challenges to complete everyday tasks such as doing your hair or making a sandwich blindfolded to experience living with blindness.

In addition to the activities, workshops were also held to teach students how to finger spell with British Sign Language.

The successful awareness week drew to a close with a show called ‘Reasons To Be Cheerful’ staged by Graeae Theatre – a disabled-led theatre company that profiles the skills of actors, writers and directors with physical and sensory impairments.

Reg Cobb, Kensington and Chelsea College’s Study Support Officer said: ‘Having a disability doesn’t mean you’re held back in life and it’s important to focus on the abilities rather than disabilities.’

‘The event was a great success and really got people thinking about their own levels of awareness about disability and how barriers can be overcome with the right attitude, support and services.’

The College’s Study Support Services already has an excellent reputation locally for providing a wide range of support for people with disabilities to ensure they can complete their course successfully.

This includes support workers for people with learning difficulties or brain injuries, communication support workers for deaf students, one-to-one tutorial support for students with dyslexia and zoomtext software for students with visual impairments or jaws software for blind students.