Mentors Sought for Audio Describers at ACB National Convention

by Susan Glass

Are you attending ACB’s national conference and convention in Minneapolis this summer?  And are you a fan of, advocate for, or user of audio description?  If so, please consider volunteering as a mentor to an audio describer attending this summer’s Audio Describers’ Conference or Institute, which are running concurrently with the convention. 
 
For the second time, the ACB Audio Description Project is offering its unique mentorship initiative: sighted attendees of the Audio Description Project conference will be paired with a blind or visually impaired mentor who is attending the ACB convention.  Often institutions seeking to provide audio description, as well as the audio describers themselves, have never actually met or interacted with a blind person. They need internships and practica. They need to understand the audience for whom they are writing. What better opportunity for such interaction than at the ACB conference and convention, where some 1,500 blind people will likely be present?
 
If you agree to be a mentor, you must make the following commitments: 1) attend a brief meet-and-greet session on Sunday, July 3 from 5:15 to 6 p.m., where you are paired with your mentee; 2) attend the ACB opening session on Sunday evening – with your mentee; 3) allow your mentee to join you for at least two other activities during the convention. These activities might include touring the exhibit hall together, attending an affiliate meeting or an additional ACB general session, taking a walk in Minneapolis, dining together, or watching an audio-described film.  Who knows? You may forge a new friendship, and increase understanding between sighted and blind communities.
 
IMPORTANT! Signing up to be a mentor does NOT allow you free access to the Audio Describers’ Conference or Institute.  You must register and pay in order to participate in either of these venues. Watch for pre-registration and pricing information, available soon on the ACB web site.
 
If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please contact Susan Glass by telephone at (408) 429-9567, or by e-mail at susancglass@att.net. Please provide your address and best contact information, as well as whether you would prefer to be matched with a describer specializing in film and television, live theater, dance and musical performance, museum exhibitions, or national parks and recreation areas.  We hope to arrange our mentor matches well in advance of the conference and convention.