Wrap of the Vision Impairment Summer Camp
Over the weekend we were proud to host our third vision impairment camp. Delivered collaboratively between Swimming New Zealand and Blind Sport NZ, 9 swimmers with varying levels of vision impairment took part in a 3-day camp – with the common highlight being mentored by London 2012 Paralympian Daniel Holt.
Having both Cameron Leslie and Daniel Holt involved for the camp meant the swimmers aged between 10-24 were able to learn from their life skills, water skills, hear about their sporting journey, and hold a Paralympic medal in their hand.
SNZ Disability and Para Swimming Participation Manager, Cameron Leslie, said it was a great continuation of the “Summer Camp” that ran late last year.
“We’ve seen our swimmers living with vision impairment progress massively over the past 12 months - with skills themselves but also the number of attendees. It was a moving weekend which always reminds and reinforces to me about the value of our work.”
“The feedback we get from whanau is always so powerful. We just don’t know what we don’t know and the connection whanau get away from the pool is invaluable.”
“Personally, I think we have added huge value to the swimmers. We are trying to bring people together who share not only a love for the water, but also an impairment which is normalised.”
Daniel Holt hosted a Q&A session with the swimmers, delving into his own personal experiences and providing valuable advice for both the future swimmers and parents.
Speaking on the importance of running these camps and how we can connect with younger swimmers.
“Fantastic to see the engagement and all the swimmers coming through that have the possibility of becoming the Paralympic swimmers of tomorrow.”
During the camp participants had several water sessions, a guest speaker, and an outside canoe activity in Lake Pupuke in partnership with Canoe Racing NZ and their programme Paddle Able. A chance for many to try canoeing for the first time in an inclusive environment.
The camp aims to enhance water confidence among individuals with a vision impairment, spearheaded by Swimming NZ and Blind Sport NZ. Additionally, both organisation's seek to rekindle the involvement of visually impaired swimmers and foster connections between role models in the sport and the upcoming generation.
For more information about further events please email email@example.com