BSL guides aim to make parkrun events more accessible

Earlier this year, parkrun UK set up the PROVE project (Parkrun Running or Volunteering for Everyone), to help make parkrun events more welcoming and accessible for disabled people and those with long term health conditions. As part of the project, they have released a series of British Sign Language (BSL) videos to support people with hearing loss who want to get involved with their local parkrun.

Philippa signing on parkrun BSL video

The British Sign Language (BSL) videos cover a range of topics including:

  • What is parkrun?
  • How does parkrun work?
  • What is covered in a parkrun pre-event briefing?

Watch parkrun's informative BSL videos on their YouTube channel.

To ensure they created useful and accurate BSL videos, parkrun appealed for volunteers from within the parkrun community, with expertise in hearing impairments and British Sign Language to come forward. Philippa, Victoria and Nic were soon appointed as parkrun Champions for deaf and hard of hearing people.

Their aim, as parkrun Champions, was to make parkrun more accessible and encourage deaf people who haven't take part before to give it a go.

Philippa said:

"The great thing about parkrun is it doesn't matter if you walk or run, if you're fast or slow, if you're a volunteer or a runner, everyone is made to feel welcome."
"We had lots of ideas about how we could do this and one that we were particularly keen to see through was to make some British Sign Language (BSL) films that could be used to promote parkrun to Deaf and hard of hearing people who might not know what parkrun is, or who might be nervous about not knowing what to expect at their first parkrun."

Since launching the BSL videos, Philippa, Victoria and Nic have continued to spread the message as parkrun Champions. They set up and manage parkrun UK's official Facebook group for deaf and hard of hearing parkrunners to share advice, tips, opinions and stories on all things related to parkrun.

For more information about parkrun's PROVE project and to find out more about support available for deaf and hard of hearing people, visit parkrun website.

Photo credit: parkrun