Neurodivergent Film Experiences in Nelson BC

Neurodivergent Film Experiences in Nelson BC

Neurodivergent individuals in the Nelson and Kootenay Lake region can face a number of challenges in their daily lives, including accessing and enjoying films. Fortunately, The Civic Theatre has introduced an initiative to help make the film-going experience more inclusive and accessible for our region.

A Spectrum of Experiences

One of the primary challenges faced by neurodivergent individuals when trying to access films is the social and sensory overload that can accompany a trip to the cinema. For example, the bright lights, loud sounds, and crowded spaces of a typical movie theatre can be overwhelming, making it difficult for some folks to enjoy the film itself. To address this issue, in February 2023, The Civic Theatre began offering sensory-friendly screenings for neurodivergent individuals and their families. Operations Manager, Devon Caron stated that they “are also reaching out to local grocery stores for donations of breakfast items.” The more relaxed atmosphere of these screenings will allow individuals to enjoy the film in a comfortable and manageable environment. These twice monthly screenings will feature:

  • Lowered lighting
  • Reduced sound levels
  • A quiet space for anyone who is feeling over stimulated.

Breaking Down Barriers

The inspiration to bring about this initiative came to The Civic by looking to see who wasn’t attending their events. This is when they realised that they may not be meeting some sensory needs with their regular screenings. “We are committed to building a place [where] everyone can feel at home and included,” Devon adds. The Civic Theatre also has plans to implement an elevator, appropriately pitched ramps and accessibility features for people who are hearing and/or sight impaired.

Lights, Camera, Neurodivergence!

The Civic Theatre is committed to helping to improve the community by creating a more inclusive and supportive environment for neurodivergent individuals. They are giving families that may otherwise not be able to attend the cinema an opportunity to do so without judgement. With support, these experiences will continue to serve the needs of all individuals regardless of their neurodivergent status.

Welcoming Everyone

These screenings will be held on the second and fourth Saturday mornings of each month, from 10:30am - 2pm, by donation. Everyone is welcome to join at The Civic, so make sure to support this initiative by attending these screenings regularly. If you would like to book tickets or find out more information about the films, contact the The Civic Theatre here. The fun doesn't need to end once the film does. Stretch your legs whilst visiting some boutique shops, wander around whilst listening to our mural audio tour or explore the Nelson Museum Archives & Galleries. If you're feeling peckish then grab a bite to eat or something to sip at one of our many dining venues or breweries.

#FindingAwesome | #ExploreKootenayLake

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