Garrick Scott will joke with you that he’s just a man with two first names. But the 40-year-old from Georgia is more than that. He’s a blind man …
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Garrick Scott will joke with you that he’s just a man with two
But the 40-year-old from Georgia is more than that.
He’s a blind man with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications
and a sense of humor that permeates every room he enters. That
includes the kitchen at The Colorado Center for the Blind in
Littleton, where his female opponents were preparing a meal for
their second annual “Battle of the Breakfast” competition.
“I don’t see any grits here,” Scott said. “And I haven’t tasted
any meat yet.”
Learning how to cook is part of the Center’s Home Management
program, which teaches students how to live independently.
During the course, students of all ages are trained to cook
simple to gourmet meals. They barbecue with charcoal and gas
grills, plan dinner parties, learn self-defense, shop at malls,
sew, garden and plan outings.
“I believed the most important thing we wanted to accomplish was
to teach people that just because they are blind, that does not
have to change their expectations for themselves in life,” said
Diane McGeorge, founder of the Colorado Center for the Blind.
“The main thing we want to teach is blindness is not the tragedy
that often times it is painted to be. In fact, we don’t think it’s
a problem at all.”
In order to demonstrate proficiency in home management, students
are required to prepare a meal for 15 people, and eventually,
The Battle of the Breakfast competition is designed to give them
a practice run.
“They figure if you can do it for 50 people you can certainly do
it for yourself,” Scott said.
Home Management is part of the Center’s main program,
It’s a nine-month course, with about 25 people in each
Students must be 18 or older, and live in furnished apartments,
about five miles from the center.
During these nine months, students learn what Executive Director
Julie Deden calls “structured discovery.”
“Traditionally, an instructor is behind the student, telling
them what to do,” she said. “In a structured way, we’re going to
let people go out and discover the world.”
The first things students learn is how to use public transit, to
get from their apartment to the center. Once in classes for the
day, the curriculum stresses independent learning and
Braille and cane travel, business, woodshop and rock climbing
are all taught through the center.
“We have a late relative of Lawrence Welk coming for our
presentation,” Scott joked trying to intimidate the group of
females serving the food at the battle.
The competition is boys versus girls.
Presentation is part of the grade, and though the girls had no
“celebrities” up their sleeves, they did make a nice show out of
their “Taste of the World” display.
The tables had flags for centerpieces, world music and meals
from six different countries.
“The girls are setting the bar pretty high,” said Ken Parks, a
judge at the battle.
“Yeah, because it’s more like an army of women against, like 14
guys,” said student A.J. Hovet.
The boys wouldn’t give up their secrets, but Scott and Hovet are
convinced they’re such good cooks that they’ll be able to beat the
girls “on the fly.”
“Only pipes burst under pressure,” Scott chuckled.
Many of the classes, including home management are taught by
instructors who are also blind — a unique aspect of the Littleton
“We focus on positive blind role models working along with our
students, because we want our students to feel like they can do
anything they want,” Deden said. “If students see me taking the
bus, they realize they can do it, too.”
There is no hand-holding in any of the work, but instead a push
to empower each individual.
“We don’t give people the answers,” Deden said. “We give people
the tools to find the answers.”
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