This week our charity welcomed members of the Zurich Community Trust to our home centre for a volunteers day of maintenance and sport.
Together with a few of our coaches, the dedicated Zurich team gave our charity a day of their time to help us maintain our outdoor areas. The day was hosted to establish a relationship between our two organisations with aspirations to work together again in the near future.
Each employee of the Zurich Community Trust is entitled to three days of voluntary service per year, so we were honoured to welcome all in attendance. Many of the volunteers live locally in the surrounding Sutton and East Croydon area, so were greatly pleased to be supporting a charity so local to them.
Throughout the day our Coach Mentors supported the volunteers as they painted the wooden sleepers that line the cricket ground and methodically cleared elm tree saplings that were overshadowing behind our indoor cricket school. As well as maintaining our cricket grounds, the volunteers experienced a workshop in visual disability awareness and communication directed by our Disability and Inclusion Programmes Manager Ryan Jones.
Ryan shared: “It was a pleasure to help teach everyone about visual impairment as well as the work we do across all 14 of our programmes.”
As a talented VI Rugby player himself, Ryan’s personal and professional experience with visual impairment meant everyone came away feeling inspired and more understanding of visual disabilities and their impact.
Nicole was a team leader from Zurich attending the event. She shared: “We have all really enjoyed today, it’s been so enlightening to wear the VI goggles and see how people living with vision disabilities have to overcome challenges.”
She added: “Learning about visual disabilities has allowed our team to understand how important vocal communication is for some of the clients we work with.”
As well as having a lesson in visual disabilities, the group took part in a VI Cricket game wearing simulating vision impairment goggles to better understand how instructions, claps and voices can transform a visually impaired players experience with sports.
Elle is our charity’s Netball Programmes Manager. After supporting on the day she shared: “It was brilliant to watch everyone try on the simulating visual impairment glasses and understand how they can improve their communication skills both outside and inside of where when speaking with people from the VI community.
Thank you to everyone involved in taking part and making the day such a success!