Special to The Sun
The University of Central Oklahoma invites community members to participate in hands-on learning experiences during its annual Disability Awareness Week from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 1-4, fostering understanding of the challenges people living with disabilities face.
Sponsored by Central’s Students for an Accessible Society, Disability Awareness Week activities will take place next to Broncho Lake on Central’s campus.
“This event is about creating awareness for a diverse minority group of people. Responsible educators and community members need to be cultivated to help society flourish and to put in place equal opportunities for people with disabilities,” said Sharla Weathers, coordinator for Disability Support Services at Central.
On Monday, the week will kick off with blind and visual challenges where participants will use canes, blindfolds and goggles to simulate the challenges blind or visually disabled individuals face.
Participants also will face barriers like trashcans, tables and bystanders. Others will be challenged to assemble a jigsaw puzzle, decipher U.S. coins, write their name and draw a picture — all while blindfolded.
On Tuesday, participants will interact with various assistive technology devices and learn about how technology is making information more accessible to those with disabilities.
On Wednesday, tests and games will simulate various learning disability challenges, providing a better understanding of common challenges people with learning disabilities face. In addition, a hearing loss simulation kit will be available to identify challenges individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing face.
On Thursday, participants will complete physical challenges including maneuvering a wheelchair through a maze.
In the event of inclement weather, all events scheduled for that day will be moved indoors, across from the food court in the Nigh University Center.
FOR MORE information, contact Central’s Disability Support Services at 974-2516 or visit www.uco.edu/student-affairs/dss.