Nystagmus Awareness Day – 20 June
The theme for Nystagmus Awareness Day 2021 is Raindrops.
Raindrops story writing and drawing competition for children
What do raindrops mean to you? What do they smell, sound, feel or taste like? What do they make you think of? How do they capture your imagination?
The Nystagmus Network Raindrops competition celebrates the wonderful creativity of children’s writing and illustration.
The best stories and drawings will be published in a special book which will be available to purchase from September 2021.
How to enter
The competition is open to all children with or without nystagmus, aged 5 to 14 years. There will be winners in each age category.
Tips from your favourite authors and illustrators
Between now and Nystagmus Awareness Day, children will have the opportunity to hear from famous children’s writers and illustrators and attend inspirational online workshops with Helen Rutter, Tim Pearce and Claire Alexander.
If your little one is a reluctant writer, why not encourage them by asking friends and family to sponsor them 1p a word?
There will be some great prizes for winners of the best stories or drawings in each age category, including publication in a special book.
So get writing or drawing. We can’t wait to see and read your entries.
For adults with nystagmus
Back by popular demand, but this year also with the theme of Raindrops, is our photography competition for anyone aged 16 or over.
Please email your digital image, which must be your own work, in landscape format, high resolution and free of copyright, with your full name to Raindrops@nystagmusnet.org
Closing date for entries is 23:59pm on Saturday 19 June.
There will be prizes for the winning entries and all photographs will feature in a virtual exhibition for Nystagmus Awareness Day and at a physical exhibition at Open Day 2021 on Saturday 25 September.
Welly Walk for Raindrops.
Whether it’s raining or not, we want you to join in the fun and do a sponsored 5k walk for nystagmus in your wellies on Saturday 19 or Sunday 20 June. Get the whole household along, including the dog.
Money raised from sponsorship of your welly walk will give hope to the 1 in 1,000 adults and children living with nystagmus in the UK.
Prizes for everyone who raises £100 or more
Raindrops for schools
We have produced lots of teaching and learning materials to help mark Nystagmus Awareness Day, to celebrate Raindrops and to encourage children to take part in the story writing and drawing competition. There is a PowerPoint presentation, a lesson plan and our booklet especially for children ‘Wobbly Eyes”. These can be used in the run up to 20 June or any other day to help raise awareness of nystagmus.
How amazing are you?
It wouldn’t be Nystagmus Awareness Day without your amazing nystagmus stories. So once again we’re asking you to celebrate your achievements, despite of, or maybe even because of having nystagmus.
Not only do these stories help raise awareness of nystagmus, but they also bring hope to so many parents whose children have just been diagnosed. In previous years we’ve heard some truly amazing stories of success. We want to celebrate your achievements with you and make Nystagmus Awareness Day 2021 even more amazing!
We will feature all your amazing stories on our Facebook page
Send your amazing nystagmus story to Raindrops@nystagmusnet.org
Awareness Day fundraisers
Nystagmus Awareness Day is about fundraising, too. The children are asking friends and family to sponsor them 1p per word as they write their Raindrops stories. There are lots more ideas for you to try, too.
On Nystagmus Awareness Day 2020 Josh shared with us his nystagmus success story for our ‘How amazing are you?’ campaign. He’s a successful primary school teacher, a Masters graduate and an accomplished musician and singer.
Josh says: “I think it’s really important to say that if you’re born with nystagmus, being visually impaired is normal. You’ve never known any different. You even forget that other people can see better than you. I only found out a couple of years ago that people can see rain. I can’t see it because of my nystagmus. I’d always assumed it was invisible to everyone.”
Thank you, Josh, for the inspiration.
Why do we celebrate Nystagmus Awareness Day?
Here at the Nystagmus Network we raise awareness of the condition every single day of the year, because we believe that the more people who know about it the better. It means that adults and children who have nystagmus will get the help, support and services they need in education, employment, health, mobility and leisure and everyone affected will enjoy a better quality of life.
Holding a national and international Nystagmus Awareness Day serves as a reminder to everyone that we are here and our voices need to be heard. Every time you take part in Nystagmus Awareness Day or tell someone what you’re doing and why, that’s one more person who understands what nystagmus is.
Every pound you raise or donate helps the Nystagmus Network support our research teams across the UK to investigate this hugely complex condition, to find better diagnosis, treatments and continue to work towards prevention and cure.
Please take part in Nystagmus Awareness Day on 20 June every year
Thank you for your support