An interesting visit this week to Hollybank Trust (www.hollybanktrust.co.uk) an educational and residential facility in Yorkshire for children and adults with profound learning and physical disabilities. Fabulous facilities are matched by real passion and commitment from staff who are backed by active trustees and parents. The school is mainly residential and its graduates then move on to small residential facilities in the community.
All very impressive, and nothing more so than the Vision Project in which Hollybank service users engage in a range of activities including sailing, drama, interactive art and…photography. You would not readily expect people with profound learning and physical disabilities to be producing eye-catching images but a combination of specially adapted cameras for disabled people and dedicated staff the people in the Photography Group have really excelled.
All of this of course is a far cry from the infamous ‘day centre’ model where service users would spend day after day labouring over a wicker basket filled with goodies, the only benefit going to a local company who got a great deal on cheap labour. The Hollybank model – like all progressive and creative philosophies – strives to accentuate ability and not ‘contain’ disability.
And at Care Images, we are interested to make contact with photographers who have a disability and who are looking to showcase their work and talent. Please contact us through the website.