Croatia holds dinner in the dark benefit

The event for “Foundation Paralympian” was held in complete darkness to provide a unique experience from the perspective of blind and visually impaired athletes. 17 Nov 2015
People sitting on tables in a room
ⒸCroatian Paralympic Committee
By Croatian Paralympic Committee

For the third consecutive year, the Croatian Paralympic Committee hosted its “Foundation Paralympian,” a dinner in which it raises funds that go toward helping its para-athletes train.

This year’s Foundation welcomed guests in Zagreb on 5 November to a gala dinner entitled "Dinner in the Dark," in which a meal was organised in complete darkness and was the first of its kind in Croatia. Guests were dining in a darkened hall and were hosted by trained waiters who wore "night vision" goggles.

Among the guests were the representatives of the leading companies in Croatia such as Allianz, Industrija (INA) and Hrvatski Telekom, with whom the Croatian Paralympic Committee has nourished long-term relationships.

"Dinner in the dark was a unique experience from the perspective of blind and visually impaired persons, among which are some of our top athletes,” Vanja Bzik from Allianz said. “If we were, until now, admiring sports results of Paralympians, after the dinner in complete darkness we admire, above all, their everyday life. The dinner was delicious and strong message for Paralympic year ahead.”

The renowned Paralympian and board member of the Foundation Paralympic, Ana Srsen, stated that the dinner was magnificent and a different, truly memorable experience.

"Throughout the evening we were able to experience what it means to be deprived of the sense of sight and how other senses adjust when we are in complete darkness,” the four-time Paralympic swimmer said. “Although we have not seen each other, everyone at the table agreed that we communicated better than when we saw each other. In the same way athletes with disabilities, despite physical or other limitations, try to use other functions to achieve their full potential. Any restriction can become an opportunity for growth and development in another direction. "