Hi VIS Fortnight 2023 – 1-14 June 2023
HiVis fortnight 2023 is taking place between 1st – 14th June, marking a shift to a consistent, ‘first two weeks in June’ from here on in!
What hasn’t changed is the aim to celebrate ‘all things’ related to accessible libraries and reading, and our desire to get as many people talking about the wonderful services that are on offer for people with a vision or print impairment. As before, we will be concentrating on two main areas:
- sharing positive messages via social media; and,
- organising and highlighting activities, and provision across the libraries sector
As in previous years, to help libraries and library workers join in with HiVis 2023, Share the Vision has produced a range of high quality digital promotional assets that are freely available for people to download.
These images will work on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook and the content has been provided in formats that will allow local libraries to add in their own content. There is also an additional toolkit designed to help you with your planning.
Alerts will also be sent out via the Reading Sight mailing list – and you might like to share information there about what you are doing too. Heads of Service will be made aware through Libraries Connected; and key supporting stakeholders such as CILIP, The Reading Agency, National Literacy Trust will also be encouraged to participate and promote this annual event.
Following feedback from a highly successful HiVis 2022, we are re-introducing a theme in 2023; and it will not surprise you to know that we are proposing to concentrate on the ‘cost of living’. There is a great choice of freely accessible provision, support, and content out there (see: www.readingsight.org.uk ), and no need to ‘break the bank’ to get access to accessible reading. This is something to highlight at the best of times, and more so when people are finding it tough.
What can libraries do?
We would like, during HiVis fortnight, for libraries across the UK to highlight and celebrate all that you do to help people with vision and/or print impairments to access and connect to the reading services and formats that best suit them, and to engage with reading and related activities.
Please remember, if you are featuring images/photos of your activities on social media, please make sure that these images are accessible by providing an accompanying image/’Alt text’ description. There is a handy Twitter account that you can follow (@AltTxtReminder), which can send you DM reminders when you post images without Alt text; and there is advice online to help you. For example, we use HiVis to make it easier for screen reader users.
Ideas for activities
- Run a promotion with staff, volunteers and/or customers, focusing on accessible provision within your own service, and other national specialist services that are freely available to you and your users.
- Highlight the accessible stock that you have in your collections: large print, Audio/talking books, Braille, tactile, e-book/audio/magazines etc.; especially the fact that, in most cases, it will be freely available to people with an impairment.
- Raise awareness of your freely-accessible digital provision (content, software/hardware, services, online support sessions etc.)
- Invite local ‘sight loss’ or disability groups and partner organisations in, to talk about the work they do, or to deliver an activity during the fortnight
- Feature any accessible book groups or other ‘social’ sessions that you have going on in your libraries.
- Celebrate the warm welcome and helpful signposting that is available within the library
- Please engage with HiVis2023 via Twitter: @ReadingSight using the tag #HiVis2023
The availability of alternative formats and cultural engagement through libraries is critical to ensuring that the >2 million people in the UK who are blind, or who have sight loss or anything that stops them from using standard print, can access, enjoy and share a diverse range of reading and experiences. Hi Vis (formerly Make A Noise in Libraries) fortnight seeks each year to focus on the importance of accessible libraries and reading; and encourages local and national services to raise the profile of provision, collections and engagement in this area.