Climb Beyond Vision
The non-governmental organization Active Zone Outdoor taking into consideration the poor opportunities that people with visual impairment have in sport and outdoor activities, coordinates the “CLIMB beyond VISION project’’ aiming to involve youth with visual disability and without, together in a “getting to know the sport of rock climbing” activity. Furthermore, the involvement of youth in this activity contributes in developing their physical health as well as cultivating their personal skills and self-improvement. Additionally, ‘Climb beyond Vision” gives a great opportunity to people with visual impairment and not, to interact and work together in a team-building sport such as sport rock climbing, developing the feeling of acceptance and breaking stereotypical views or beliefs related to people with visual impairment.
The activity has set the following objectives:
Getting to know and familiarize individuals with and without visual impairment with the sport of rock-climbing;
Cultivation of empathy among the society regarding people with visual impairment
Provision of equal opportunities to all young people such as participating in non-popular sports;
Dealing with the stereotypical perception that people with disabilities cannot be involved or participate in sport and outdoor activities;
Development of mental and physical health through sports;
Promotion of sports in the physical environment;
Interaction between young people with visual and without visual impairment.
The activity program consists of three different workshops and a practical exercise in rock climbing. Participants at the beginning will have the opportunity to get to know each other through name games and ice breaking activities. Then, the group will be divided into two subgroups which will undertake two different workshops.
More specifically, the first workshop focuses on trust and team building between the members of the group. The second workshop emphasizes on getting to know the rock climbing equipment and learning basic climbing knots. Climbing on the rock, which is going to be the longest workshop, will give the opportunity to all participants to implement the knowledge that they will acquire during the two previous workshops and undertake the following roles:
climber: the person who is climbing on the rock;
belayer: the person who is responsible for the climber’s safety; the person who pulls the rope through a belay device as the climber goes up;
Back up person: the person who ensures that all security measures are followed by the protocol.
The activity will be completed with a circle workshop, asking participants to discuss and express their feelings and emotions and how their management led to a positive or a negative outcome of each of their attempts in completing a rock-climbing route.
All the activities will be coordinated and monitored by specialized training staff under George Andreou’s supervision, climbing instructor of the Cyprus Federation of Mountaineering, Sport Climbing and Orientation, certified by the International Federation (UIAA).
The project has received funding from the "Youth Initiatives" Programme of the Youth Board of Cyprus.