People with Autism and post traumatic stress disorder are sensitive to loud and large venues – generally places that have over-stimulating environments. In many cases, people with these conditions or parents with kids with these conditions avoid going to such places. However, completely avoiding such environments means missing out on some fun and exciting events and being part of a once in a lifetime celebration. (think sports events)
KultureCity, a not for profit based out of Birmingham, Alabama is wanting to change that. KultureCity’s mission is to make environments inclusive for people with autism, and they have created a program that allows people with sensory needs to still enjoy loud, over-stimulating environments. Last year, KultureCity worked with Quicken Loans Arena, home to the Cleveland Cavaliers to create a sensory room that has calming colors and noise muffling walls on the suite level, where people, if over-stimulated, could use for a break from all the noise. In the sensory rooms, staff also provide noise muffling headphones, fidget toys and cushions to guests to make them more comfortable.
Since this program started at the arena, more and more families with sensory needs have attended games, making it a success. As a matter of fact, since then, around 19 NBA teams, a few NFL and MLB stadiums, along with zoos and aquariums have jumped on the bandwagon, and rolled out sensory-inclusive programming for their audience members with sensory needs.
To ensure that staff members are equipped with the right responses, KultureCity employees take them through a thorough training to make them aware of sensory needs, autism, PTSD and other issues that may arise.
To make it easier for people and families to find sensory inclusive locations, KultureCity has released an app that lists all these places, and provides details on what’s available at each location. Besides a list of sensory locations, the app also has a resource library of articles and videos that address various topics like speech therapy, applied analysis, movement method, AAC, feeding tips & activities, yoga for people with sensory needs and many more.
Julian Maha, CEO of KultureCity suggests that if you don’t find your city’s venues in the list, let KultureCity know through the app, and the nonprofit will provide tools and information to bring sensory inclusion to your town.
watch the video below to learn more about KultureCity:
Source: Fast Company