BLIND SKIERS

Ever since Helen Keller inspired the Lions Club International to champion the cause of vision impairment in 1925, Lions Clubs all over the world have served and advocated for the blind and visually impaired. Nearly a century later, this long-standing mission continues unhindered.

Blind People
Million

or have moderate to severe distance vision impairment (MSVI)

Near-Vision Impairment
Billion

because they don’t have a pair of glasses

Visually Impaired
%

Live in developing countries

Is it possible for a child who is considered to be blind to be able to enjoy downhill skiing the way normally sighted people can?

Deep Creek Lions Club believed it was and took on this challenge 49 years ago by founding our own Blind Skiers Program. With the help of our Lions Club members, local volunteers, student volunteers, local businesses and Wisp Ski Resort we have helped hundreds of students from Maryland area schools go downhill skiing!

In 2022, Deep Creek Lake Lions Club hosted 15 visually impaired children and over 20 of their family members during its Blind Skier program during 4 sessions in January and February with the assistance of volunteer sighted guides and special adaptive equipment and techniques. The Club pays for or arranges donation of all expenses for the visit. Wisp resort donates equipment rentals, lift tickets and provides discounted food. Skiers enjoy a hearty breakfast each morning of the program and enjoy a snowmobiling trip at the beginning of each session. The Club hosts a complimentary dinner for all volunteers at Uno’s in appreciation of their service.

The Club has built a relationship with the Maryland Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind which allows it to publicize the program directly to the parents of visually impaired children.

The Club is gearing up to celebrate the 50th year of the Blind Skier program next ski season (2022-23). The Club is in the planning stages of an event to celebrate this anniversary in 2023.

Blind skier pole
Smiles
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