Every birthday party should be special. But throwing one you’ll always remember with a smile takes time and effort — especially when the star of the show (or guests) are affected by impaired vision or blindness.
Proper accessibility is crucial to ensure everyone invited to the birthday party has fun and feels included. Sounds daunting? Don’t worry: here are 5 easy tips for an accessible birthday party you’ll never forget.
Send customized invitations to your guests affected by sight loss
One of the most important steps in creating an inclusive birthday party for all of your guests is sending customized invitations.
Text isn’t enough. Yes, a friend, relative or carer may be able to read a traditional invitation to them, but the guest is bound to be touched if you tailor it to their needs.
Cards with Braille are available online but you can make them more tactile with stickers, beads and glitter.
Let guests reach out and touch your decorations
Placing balloons, streamers, banners, neon lights and other traditional birthday party decorations up high is fine for guests unaffected by sight loss.
But it’s vital to create a fun atmosphere for those living with blindness or vision impairments. And hanging your decorations lower, within reach, can help. Making use of water slide rentals could be a good idea as they’ll be able to feel all of the water splashing against their bodies while they’re having fun.
Obviously, health and safety is important, so be careful. When it comes to lighting, custom neon signs could be a safe option, since LEDs tend to produce less heat. You can shop personalized neon lighting that can be customized according to your needs from websites such as www.neonfilter.com. Other decorations like balloons and streamers can be placed in positions where they may brush against guests as they pass. It all helps reinforce the celebratory buzz for those unable to see the decor.
Create a tactile experience with gifts and treats
One sweet way to ensure an accessible birthday party everyone will remember is to prepare tactile snacks.
For example, create Braille on cupcakes and/or birthday cake using decorations or treats like M&Ms. Spell out sweet messages or names, so each guest has their own custom treat.
Host games based on touch and interaction
Games are a nice touch for birthday parties, no matter how young or old your guests are. They’re terrific for breaking the ice and bringing everyone together.
All games must be accessible to everyone, whether they’re affected by impaired vision/blindness or not. Try:
- a treasure hunt around the home/venue, using Braille signs or tactile maps
- classics like pin the tail on the donkey or piñatas
- pass the parcel
- quizzes (perhaps based on the guest of honor)
Make sure the venue offers suitable accessibility
- make sure all doorways are unobstructed
- hang signs with Braille and/or large, high-contrast text to aid navigation
- check stairs and floors are free of obstacles/tripping hazards
Furthermore, you might want to place safety signs (which you can find in this link) around the restricted areas in the apartment, so people can know to stay away from them. Else you could restrict that passage completely with the permission of your landlord.
Accessibility is a core concern at RightHear. Our indoor orientation solution is designed to help users living with vision impairments or blindness find their way inside almost any environment. This maximizes safety and independence for every single user.
Take the 5 steps above into consideration when hosting an accessible birthday party to create an unforgettable event for every single guest.