Planning Programs and Activities in Parks and Recreation
For recreation program coordinators, critical components in program planning are determining how the program information will be conveyed and what methods will be used to provide effective communication for visitors with disabilities. For example, in many museums, historical items are kept behind glass cases for preservation. What alternatives could be offered to a person who is blind so that he or she may benefit from the display of the artifacts? Providing audio description of the artifacts could give the visitor with a visual impairment a better idea of the size, shape, texture, and use for the object. In addition, it would benefit all museum visitors by allowing more information to be included in the exhibit.
When determining an effective auxiliary aid or service, take into account:
- Type of communication
- Length of communication
- Complexity of communication
Consider a person who is deaf and would like to take golf lessons. When the person initially registers for the lessons, the length of communication will most likely be short; perhaps all that is needed is for the person to complete registration forms. In this case, the complexity may only require writing short notes from staff to participant to ask and answer questions. However, during the golf lesson itself, the type of communication primarily exchanged with the beginning golfer will most likely include verbal descriptions from the instructor to improve the golfer's technique. For the actual lessons, a qualified sign language interpreter will most likely will be needed, due to the length and complexity of the lesson and information conveyed.
Appropriateness of the auxiliary aid is another key consideration. For instance, a written script is not beneficial in a movie theater. It is very difficult for a person to both follow along with the actions on the movie screen and read a written narration in the dark theater. A qualified sign language interpreter may also divert attention away from the movie. Captioning would be a better solution. Rear Window & reg; captioning is a system that provides closed captioning to individuals at their seat as opposed to placing the caption on the movie screen itself. Reverse captions are displayed on an LED mounted in the back of the theater. Portable reflective panels attach to any theater seat allowing the patron to sit anywhere in the theater and adjust the reflector for his or her personal comfort.