- The San Diego County Fair is one of the most anticipated summertime traditions in our region. We all get nostalgic thinking about the sights, sounds, and tastes of fair, as well as the hustle and bustle of the crowds. But what if you were a guest who could not see? What is your experience like, compared to guests with sight?
- Braille Institute San Diego will bring 20 students with low or no vision to the San Diego County Fair at the Del Mar Fairgrounds on Friday, June 23.
- For some students, this is the first time they will experience the fair.
- The students will be separated into four smaller groups led by Braille Institute San Diego staff members and sighted guides.
- This field trip serves as a sensory experience for Braille Institute San Diego students. They will have the opportunity to smell and taste the delicious fair food, hear the rides and music, touch animals in the Petting Farm, and much more!
- Nearly 90 percent of Braille Institute San Diego’s students (youth and adults) have some remaining vision. It’s the organization’s mission to support independence as their students’ vision changes and field trips like this offer the opportunity to experience the largest County Fair in the United States.
- By following the designated group, media will get a chance to experience how people with disabilities enjoy one of the biggest traditions in our region. The fair has a section of their website dedicated to important tips to make their visit enjoyable.
WHEN: Friday, June 23, 2017 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
WHERE: San Diego County Fair, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar, CA 92014
(Del Mar Fairgrounds)
- 20 young adults who are visually impaired taking in all that the San Diego County Fair has to offer: food, rides, games, music, animals and entertainment
- Braille Institute San Diego staff members and sighted guides leading students around the exciting fairgrounds.
- Darlene G. Miller, M.A., educational programs manager of the San Diego Center can answer questions about the field trip as well as other classes and services offered, and the mission of Braille Institute.
- The ADA coordinator or other representative of the San Diego County Fair will be able to speak to how they accommodate guests with disabilities.
- Inspiring students, volunteers and staff members who can speak about the importance of experiences like visiting the San Diego County Fair for someone who is visually impaired.
WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT:
- According to a recent National Health Interview Survey, 20.6 million adult Americans reported vision loss that cannot be corrected with glasses or contacts – this is just more than six percent of the U.S. population.
- It is a stereotype that Braille Institute only teaches people how to read and communicate using Braille – this is a very small part of what they offer to the public, and is usually taught to students who are born blind or with significant vision loss.
- All classes and services offered by Braille Institute are free of charge. By learning about tips and techniques to help maintain independence despite vision loss, students who attend classes regularly experience a renewed sense of confidence, gain independence, and are given the necessary tools to live well with low vision.
- Programs are available in English and Spanish, and include one-on-one consults and small group classes to help adults with little to no vision build practical skills, and gain or regain independence.
- Classes are developed and taught for those who are blind and visually impaired. Some of the students who have benefitted from Braille Institute services have become teachers themselves!