Via CFISD Communications
CYPRESS — CFISD’s Berry Center educational support facility partnered with nonprofit KultureCity to make all programs and events that the venue hosts to be sensory-inclusive. This new initiative promotes an accommodating and positive experience for all guests and fans with a sensory issue that visit the Berry Center. CFISD is the first school district in Texas to offer this service at one of its facilities.
The certification process entailed the Berry Center staff being trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognize those guests and fans with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. Sensory bags, equipped with noise-canceling headphones (provided by Puro Sound Labs), fidget tools, verbal cue cards and weighted lap pads will also be available to all guests at the Berry Center who may feel overwhelmed by the environment.
Sensory sensitivities or challenges with sensory regulation are often experienced by individuals with autism, dementia, PTSD and other similar conditions (1 in 6 individuals). One of the major barriers for these individuals is sensitivity to overstimulation and noise, which is an enormous part of the environment in a venue like the Berry Center. With its new certification, the facility is now better prepared to assist guests with sensory sensitivities in having the most comfortable and accommodating experience possible when attending events.
Prior to attending an event, families can download the free KultureCity app where one can view what sensory features are available and where they can access them. Also, the app features a Social Story that will provide a preview of what to expect while enjoying an event.
“Our communities are what shapes our lives and to know that the Berry Center is willing to go the extra mile to ensure that everyone, no matter their ability, is included in their community is amazing,” said Uma Srivastava, executive director of KultureCity. “We’re honored to partner with CFISD to provide a truly inclusive experience for all fans and guests!”
Since the program’s inception, KultureCity has created more than 1,000 sensory-inclusive venues in six countries. Visit the KultureCity website for more information.