It’s been a busy week of travel for the team at LOOK. Our team have been out and about in different parts of the country, championing visually impaired young people. From leading workshops to representing LOOK at conferences, to making pizza with VI young people, our team are dedicated to supporting visually impaired young people to thrive.

Manchester

Three of our team travelled from the west (Joanne from North Wales) and north east (Charlotte and Megan from County Durham) to Manchester to visit Abraham Moss Community School. They were joined by two LOOK Mentors, Abdul and Jess. These were delivered for Manchester City Sensory Support Service for Year Six students who are currently in primary school and are moving up to high school in September.

The team talked with the students about the the similarities and differences between primary and high school, the emotions surrounding their transition. The team explained where they can go if they have any questions or problems during that transition team. The LOOK Mentors shared about their experiences.

South Wales

Others from the team travelled to South Wales to deliver a Transitions Workshop for Torfaen Sensory Support Services.

They led a drama on how students will need to self-advocate for themselves with friends, TAs, teachers and other school staff when at high school. The team explored different tech, and learning styles. They heard from Mentors, reflecting on what they did at that time and how they got involved in their school life. The Mentors also shared what they would do if they had their time again.

These workshops are vital for VI young people to understand the importance of developing skills of self-advocacy, using available support networks, and developing independent skills to be autonomous with their own possessions and learning styles. These are all skills they will rely on as they get older. The skills will prepare for them further study at college, uni, and for the world of work, as well as independent, fulfilling adulthood.

Thank you to Torfaen and to Manchester local authorities for inviting LOOK to deliver these bespoke workshops.

Worcester

Our CEO, Charlotte Carson, travelled from Hereford with Lacey, LOOK Mentor and Intern, to Worcester where were joined by another LOOK Mentor, Maymunah. Charlotte, Lacey and Maymunah participated in a day for prospective students at University of Worcester. Visually impaired young people from New College Worcester and RNC Hereford learnt about what the university offers and the proactive support they offer to VI students. Thank you to University of Worcester for your welcome and for all you are doing to make VI young people to thrive.

Below is a photo of Lacey and Charlotte standing in front of the University of Worcester building with one of their team. Lacey and Charlotte are both wearing LOOK t-shirts and are holding their canes. Charlotte is also wearing a wide-brimmed straw hat and dark glasses. With the gorgeous warm weather we are enjoying this summer, we’re always remind our young people to take take of their eyes, especially those with eye conditions that mean the amount of sunlight entering the eyes cannot be controlled.

Above is a photo from a presentation on DSA in a lecture theatre at the University of Worcester.

Above is a photo of Lacey sitting on a chair during a workshop at the University of Worcester, using her BrailleNote to be quizmaster.

London

Sydney and Maria from the our Mentor Project team travelled to London for the Retina Conference to represent LOOK. Smiles all round from these two (This could be to do with that their sandwich lunch has just arrived on the table!). Sydney and Maria both have a visual impairment, as do all the Mentor Project team.

The joys and travels of train travel

Our team mostly use trains to move around. While it is a great vehicle (literally!) for VI people to move around independently, it is not without risks and challenges, as our LOOK Mentor, Abdul, experienced (read about this here, in an article in The Guardian).

A recent post on our website featured Sydney, one of our team, sharing how she overcame anxiety about train travel as a blind young person. Catch up on this here, and please do share with VI young people you know who may be helped by Sydney’s tips and lived experience.

The photo below is from Charlotte and Megan at 04:35 before taking their very early train from Durham to Manchester. The reward for waking up at the crack of dawn was them catching a beautiful sunrise and having a quiet train.

Sussex

Meanwhile, down south, the Sussex LOOK Mentors and their mentees had a pizza-making morning at Pizza Express. Thanks to the staff at Brighton Jubilee Street branch for making it such a fantastic experience for all!

Here’s a gallery of photos showing the Mentors and mentees preparing pizzas in the prep area and then tucking into their pizzas (which look totally delicious!). Find out more about the LOOK Mentor Project here.