A TULIP FOR YOU is the exceptionally successful project of artistic and creative integration activities for partially sighted and blind children that The Association Divadelná Nitra carried out since 2007. Since 2009 the project continues as an yearlong activity. In this way the Association intentionally builds up the continuously sustainable cultural and creative background also for minority groups of our society.
The project title has been naturalized by radio play The Tulip Cradle at the first “tulip” workshop at the International Theatre Festival Divadelná Nitra´08.
The dominant project event is SEPTEMBER TULIP – yearly meeting of more than 50 children with visual impairment and healthy children from Bratislava and Nitra at the join creative workshop at The International Theatre Festival Divadelná Nitra. Also the open air weekend creative and relaxation workshop JUNE TULIP is annually held in leisure centre near Trenčianske Teplice at the end of school year.
Since 2009 the centre for project activities becomes to be the newly – reconstructed CLUB TULIP FOR YOU set up by Association Divadelná Nitra at the Primary Boarding School of the Visually Impaired and Blind in Bratislava. Club is a creative and leisure meeting spot not only for children with disabilities who live year round in the boarding school but also for their sighted friends. The club activities – visual art, music, dance workshops – are led by project founder akad. soch. Elena Kárová.
Divadelná Nitra 2019 treated children from the A Tulip for You project to a theatre performance, an arts and crafts workshop and a drumming session on the Festival Square. For over a decade, visually impaired children meet sighted children and recently also the children of Iraqi asylum seekers at the SEPTEMBER TULIP in Nitra, scheduled this year for 27 September.
It is almost unbelievable that the project has maintained all its year‑long activities throughout. Thanks to the Primary School for Blind and Visually Impaired Children, it now has its own special home in Bratislava – A Tulip for You Club, where children receive creative training all year round; the project also features trips, the White and June Tulip, as well as the annual September Tulip in Nitra.
Only the children change. Over thirteen years, the project has seen more than 250 teenagers pass on the baton to first and second‑graders so that it may continue at full steam, the children collect creative experiences and successes, enjoy newly formed friendships, adventures, new knowledge, and are undoubtedly motivated and formed thereby. A living miracle. Anyone who spends time with children knows that gaining their attention in an age of digital temptation is not easy. And it means all the more in the life of a child that is blind or visually impaired.
empathy BLACK BOX
Some years ago, A Tulip for You has undertaken the additional task of educating the public. At festivals, schools, institutions and shopping malls, the public can glimpse the world of the blind through the interactive object empathy BLACK BOX.
The black box is a dark space where the sighted can experience the usual morning routine of a blind person. Confined in darkness in his everyday activities, walking with a white cane, reading Braille, walking down the Path of Emotion, anyone gifted with sight is amazed to discover he also has other senses that he casually overlooks – hearing, taste, touch.
For many, the Black Box comes as a shock, a surprise, a powerful experience. However, it is a legitimate exclamation mark raised to the indifference of us, the ‘majority’, our disregard or ignorance that the world also includes wounded, vulnerable and disabled people who need our attention especially – and sometimes, a bit of our help.
Project Leader: akad. soch Elena Kárová
Co‑organisers: Primary Boarding School for Blind and Visually Impaired Children in Bratislava, Prince Pribina Primary School in Nitra, Pokoj a dobro Nitra (c.a.)
Further information about a project you can find THERE.