POOLaide Webinar: Blind Girls Swim, Too! Breaking Down Barriers to Inclusion in Aquatics

Kathleen Forestell
March 3, 2021 

What would it be like to approach the edge of a pool when you can’t see? In this session, Kathleen will discuss the spectrum of blindness, best practices for interacting with people who are blind or partially sighted, and accessibility in the built environment. There will be lots of time for questions and discussion about how this applies to the aquatics industry.

Kathleen Forestell is the Lead for Advocacy and Community Outreach for the CNIB Foundation’s Ontario East region. She retired from her first career in alpine ski racing at 21 and is now an accessibility advocate. She loves dogs and is currently working with her second guide dog, Lily. She is passionate about educating people about blindness, inclusion, and barrier-free attitudes, practices, and built environments.

All 2021 POOLaide Webinars are available on our YouTube Channel.

Show Notes

Powerpoint Slides

00:00 Early start with Katie Crysdale

28:45 Introduction

30:19 Presentation

1:21:34 Q & A 

Clearing Our Path (CNIB) 

1:51:36 Post-Show 


2020 POOLaide Webinars (YouTube)

Safety in the Pool Beyond the Head Count: Creating Safer Spaces in the Water for Trans Communities (2021 POOLaide Webinar)

Transferring Practical Knowledge from Waterparks to Community Pools: Waterslides (2021 POOLaide Webinar)

Lakeview Aquatic Consultants (Facebook)  

Competitive Swimming & the COVID-19 Pandemic: the Tokyo Olympics & Beyond (IGTV)

Lakeview Aquatic Consultants (Instagram)

Lakeview Aquatic Consultants (YouTube)

CNIB Foundation

CNIB Foundation (Facebook)

CNIB Foundation (Instagram)

CNIB Foundation (Twitter) 

Clearing Our Path: creating accessible environments for people impacted by blindness

Canadian Charter of Rights & Freedoms

Great Lakes ADA Center

Pick of the Litter (Netflix documentary)

Pick of the Litter (Disney+ miniseries)

How do blind swimmers known when to flip at the wall? 

Anastasia Pagonis living at the OTC as a swimmer who is blind 

Anastasia Pagonis (Instagram)

Anastasia Pagonis (TikTok)

Guide Dog Raised by NHL Team is Ready to Head to the Paralympics with His New Swimmer Owner