1.1 Promotion of local culture and history
The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin (Lubelskie Voivodeship, Poland)
Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University (Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast, Ukraine)
Both Poland and Ukraine can boast about their rich cultural heritage, however many museums, art galleries, architecture, and historical monuments are not accessible to persons with visual impairments. Modern technology offers now the possibility to offer art to persons with blindness or low vision. Lublin already has experience in this matter - samples of adaptations of exhibits that can be manually explored at 4 museums in the city receive highly positive feedback. Museums from the other side of the border, are not prepared for such persons.
The TouchingThePast project, give a chance not only to expand the range of exhibits adapted for persons with a visual impairment in Lublin but also to introduce the idea in the Ivano-Frankivsk museums. Design and production of accessible adaptations of exhibits for museums in both cities are only a part of the project because the preparation of tactile adaptations requires special knowledge and technology. Therefore, a purchase of specialised equipment, trainings for museum and art gallery staff, guides of city tours and for blind visitors will be organized. Persons with a visual impairment from high-schools, universities, and local organizations will also participate in the tours of historic sites in Lublin and Ivano-Frankivsk. The aim of such workshops is to ensure that they are capable of meaningful exploration of exhibits and tactile graphics, what they could share with other blind and partially sighted persons.
The project will enable persons with visual impairments in both cities to participate more in cultural life. Now they will be able to visit museums and have the access to works of art. Moreover, the project offers a chance to start long term cooperation between cultural institutions in the area by joint events, exchange visits raising the awareness of the challenges faced by such persons on both sides of the Ukrainian-Polish border.
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