As the Founding President of the Lone Star Woodturners Association, Inc., I’m proud to announce that I’m planning a new hands-on woodturning symposium for visually and physically disabled individuals in November, 2010 in The Woodlands, Texas area. (Details are still being finalized as to exact date and location).
Through the years, I have received numerous emails from individuals who are blind and want to learn more about woodturning. Few educational centers will allow them to join a woodturning class because they are blind. Some of these individuals have built their own outdoor decks, build beautiful furniture, frame their own houses, rebuild cars, rewire their houses, complete their own plumbing repairs and are accomplished woodturners now, yet they are sometimes prevented from learning how to turn, or learning more about woodturning because of a limited perception of what a blind person can do.
Your Time To Turn will be the first woodturning symposium of its kind that will be specifically designed for the blind, as well as those with physical impairments such as an inability to stand for long periods, those who have a lost an arm or hand, or lost one or both of their legs. Instead of a traditional woodturning symposium where you watch a demonstrator, Your Time To Turn will be a hands-on symposium, where qualified instructors will be present to help guide attendees through the skill building exercises.
Woodturning should be accessible to anyone who has a desire to learn! The necessary skills can be adapted to accommodate many different types of disabilities including paraplegics (witness Oneway’s new 1236SD Sit Down Lathe that features a pivoting bedway, so you can use it whilst seated in a chair, or a wheelchair), those who are without a limb, or for those who are blind, as well as many other types of disabilities.
You Can Help: If you know of a blind woodturner, or another woodturner with physical disabilities who is a woodturner, please email me. I would also like to start a list of individuals who might be interested in attending (with or without any woodturning experience), or those who would like to volunteer as an instructor, video camera/digital camera operator, or as a demonstrator’s assistant at the symposium.
If you have coordinated, or helped to coordinate a woodturning symposium, or a hands-on teaching symposium before, I would appreciate any assistance you can offer. If you know of any companies who might want to help support this unique learning experience for the disabled with financial donations, or with donations of tools or equipment, please let me know.
Thanks for helping me to assist people with visual and physical disabilities to achieve their goal of learning the art and craft of woodturning.
LSWA, Inc. President
A Texas Non-Profit Educational Corporation