Cherry Street Sports open their doors to the vision impaired

by admin

Cherry Street Sports Ballina, in conjunction with Guide Dogs NSW/ACT, recently held a ‘come and try’ day for the vision impaired.

“It was fantastic to see so many vision impaired people attend the day”, said Kris Lehfeldt, the bowls organiser at Cherry Street Sports.

“The most exciting aspect was that half of the participants had never played bowls before.”

The day was the brainchild of Diana Grobler (Guide Dogs NSW/ACT) who reached out to the local Regional Bowls Manager wanting to conduct an open day for vision impaired people to come and try bowls.

Cherry Street Sports was contacted and were more than willing to be the host venue.

Although grim weather was predicted for the day, this never eventuated and clear skies meant the day could go ahead as planned.

“I was very pleased with the outcome of the day, as well as the weather. I just want to thank everyone involved for all their assistance in making the day a success,” Diana said.

It wasn’t only the participants who learnt something about vision impaired bowls on the day, as Lehfeldt found it educational also.

“I learned a lot about vision impaired bowls. Everything from how to best direct them to the techniques also used,” Kris said.

“We have an existing vision impaired bowler at our club and as a result of my learnings on the day, I was able to pass this knowledge onto him. He was previously being directed by another person from the other end of the green and as a result of the day and having a director down the same end as him, he has found it much easier to play bowls.”

Kris also went on to say that the job Diana and Guide Dogs NSW/ACT did both prior to and on the day was nothing short of amazing.

“They did such a fantastic job assisting all the participants over the course of the day and made the experience really comfortable for everyone involved,” he added.

Guide Dogs NSW/ACT and Cherry Street Sports are set to continue their association by conducting another come and try day on May 30, 2019.

If you are interested in attending the day or have any questions, please contact Guide Dogs NSW/ACT via phone on (02) 6691 8500.

Contribution by Craig Donaldson – Regional Bowls Manager (Northern NSW)