Blind & Seeing Buddy System examples

Here are a few possible ways to implement this scheme; feel free to get in touch to discuss most stream-lined process adapted to your event/venue/festival’s existing accessibility and information communication schemes. Usually, Diversity Officers and/or Awareness teams would support events with such protocols. Health and Safety teams may also be able to support, as well as accessibility and DEI external consultants.

How to get started: in your accessibility policy on your website and social media, mention this protocol and explain how visually-impaired folks may apply.
Here are some examples of how event guests could apply:

• Visually-impaired folks simply comment on your accessibility and/or logistics-related posts on your event wall on Facebook or on Instagram, sharing their request for a seeing person to accompany them, and interested seeing guests respond by commenting back. Once both seeing and blind buddies agree on attending the event together, they notify you to receive the comped ticket.
Make sure to support these comments on social media by liking and commenting with accessibility policy link including the scheme, and/or pin post to the top, and/or re-post the comment yourself for better visibility, etc.
• Let people use your own communication platforms (FAQ community forum, ticket exchange forum, event community app…) to find their blind/seeing match, once again make sure to support their queries so everyone knows it is legit and to ensure visibility so their post gets noticed and gets answers.
• Offer application forms for both seeing and blind guests to apply on your website and social media. Contact the people who filled out the forms with potential matches via email or call, let them communicate and get back to you with negative responses and you introduce other potential matches, or with positive answers and you send the comped ticket.

It might benefit your event to welcome the matched buddies at a separate counter (guest-list, press, VIPs…) to make sure both guests have everything they need from your side and simply to say hello and get feedback on this system or other accessibility initiatives you have in place.

It is also suitable to include this and any other accessibility initiative you run at your event in press releases so these protocoles get exposure and people who need them know to apply.