What would be some fun places to take a large group of both handicapped and club members on a club "outing"?
What would be some ways to raise disability awareness at my school?
I would love to read your answers and thanks in advance!!
Here are some of the places that we use to go with the social group that I was part of. Places to go as large groups:
1) Sporting Events
2) Community locations such as bowling.
3) County Fairs
7) Amusement Parks
9) Volunteer at nursing home or social event
10) A tour of some sort (Ghost tour - Vampire Tour - Garden Tour)
Often places will give donations or a discount to groups. You typically just need request it in writing to the organization. We use to get all kinds of stuff from t-shirts to tickets.
Ways to raise disability awareness:
1) Having your group being out in public is the first step. Society cannot fear what they see as a positive experience.
2) Contact the local newspaper - see if they would do an article on your group and school. Press always brings awareness.
3) Guest Speakers that have a disability talking about experiences first hand.
4) Having literature about disabilities in places that students have to wait. I use to put it in the health office and guidance areas. When you are bored you will read anything.
5) Have a gallery of work that your group produced. For example, we would do arts and crafts once a month. We would then display the art work and people could vote on 5 categories. The winners would receive a certificate, their picture taken (displayed) and a gift card for $10 from a local store. (They gift cards were donations). It was amazing how many votes would come in and others would look forward to the display being put up. We had everything from writing to photography.
6) Disability awareness month - each day we would announce the disability fact such as famous people with a disability to stats about disabilities. On Friday night we would show a movie that had a person with a disability being the main character.
7) Host a fund raising event with the money going to a local charity for disabilities.
My sister is mentally retarded and lives in a very small town. She is no longer in school (35) but my parents insist on an involved lifestyle despite the lack of resources. There has been an overwhelming response to her volunteer work at a local hospital. She received a special award for five years of continued service from the mayor and was in our town parade. If you are trying to raise awareness, I would start there . . . some sort of volunteer program. Like my sister, I'm sure these children could visit elderly homes or hospitals and distribute flowers (you'd be surprised how many people will donate flowers), sing, or just hold hands with someone that is lonely. She also acts as a concierge of sorts . . . she will fill water glasses, grab magazines, or get extra blankets for those patients that are unable to move and do not have family to tend to them . . . Doing something like this would help to both raise awareness and provide an activity . . . Good luck.
This is a wonderful idea! go to www.schwablearning.org and sign up for free to post on their parent to parent message board. You will get lots of great ideas there!!
Create a best buddy club.
You've gotten some terrific ideas, so here's a few more about disability awareness.
Do simulations of different disabilities in a special assembly, on the announcements, or at another school event.
You can do things like take a pair of glasses and mess up the lenses with scratches, vaseline, dark paint. Have someone put them on and ask them to do simple tasks like put on a shirt and pants that match, write something, etc. This shows how hard it can be to be visually impaired.
Another one is to hold an index card on your forehead. Using a pen/pencil in the hand you don't usually write with, write your name on the index card. What if you had dysgraphia or a learning disability that made writing difficult?
You can also put someone in a wheelchair that they can't get out of all day. Let them see how difficult it is to reach things and see how they feel.
Each activity/station is designed to give an able-bodied person a small taste of what it would be like to live with a disability every single day.
There are also a lot of famous people with disabilities and you could give clues and ask people to figure out who it is, then give a prize to the winner.
You can have an essay contest about disabilities, maybe about someone you know or admire with a disability, or another related topic.
Have someone with a disability come in to talk to students.
When thinking about where to take the kids think about places they usually don't get to go. I sponsored a best buddies type group in middle school and we went to school basketball games and activities because the parents usually weren't comfortable letting the handicapped kids go by themselves, and it was easily accessible and cheap. (The coaches let us in for free and we made banners and signs and cheered them on. The kids benefitted because most of them had nevern been to a game before and didn't know what to do, so the buddies showed them and they all enjoyed themselves.) We were also in a parade, and we did other things around the school.
You are very sweet to want to do this, and I hope it all works out well for you and the group!
The list could go on and on and on, so I would suggest the simplest thing (other than stay in a classroom) to do: a picnic in a park.
1) It's free! Just find a nice park.
2) It's non-restrictive and open to anyone with or without disabilities.
3) Make it a potluck and no one will be able to say there wasn't something they didn't like about it.
4) It's enough to accommodate not only your entire group, but any other family members and support staff that might come along.
5) No time limits. You set them yourself.
6) You can bring your own entertainment. Play games modified to accommodate all participants.
7) It's free!
With raising awareness, there are millions of suggestions. Some simple ones that I can think of are free movie/video nights, bake sales, or community home visits.
Good luck and have fun.
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