Sunday 24th June 2018 has been an absolutely wonderful day for Deaffest’s Co-Founder and Co-Director Nikki Stratton, who attended the Royal Windsor Cup 2018.
The event was organised by the Guards Polo Club, known as the largest polo club in Europe, which was founded in 1955 with HRH Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh as the President. The Royal Windsor Cup is Guards Polo Club’s oldest competition and is the UK’s leading 15-goal tournament.
The main sponsor of the Royal Windsor Cup is Outsourcing Inc., a recruitment company which was established in 1997 and operates global wise. The Tokyo-based company supports people of Japan across multiple levels of employment. They have a subsidiary company called Outsourcing Business Service Inc., which was established in 2015, and they supports disabled people in recruitment and employment.
“Out-Sourcing has been impressed with Outsourcing Business Service Inc. and WP Group for their work and accomplishments in running their organisations, and maintaining their viability in competitive markets, and therefore wanted to reward and honour them with a trip to the polo. There is also a sense of importance of building exposure and links with Deaf communities across the wider world.” – Outsourcing Inc.
At the event, the Outsourcing Business Service Inc. presented a promotional video, which demonstrated their business and showed deaf employees working together with hearing employees.
Outsourcing Inc. invited a number of Deaf professionals including those from the UK and Japan to the Royal Windsor Cup, as they wanted to have a welcome party and to establish a fruitful relationship for the future.
“It was a spectacular day with many surprise guests. I was not able to disclose my attendance to anyone for security reasons and I had no idea who would be attending other than HM Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip, alongside hearing and Deaf Japanese and UK guests. The day itself was incredibly prestigious with Champagne handed out, ladies in their pretty summer frocks and men in their smart suits. Mingling amongst the smartly dressed guests with champagne glasses in their hands and soaking up to the glorious sunshine, learning about Polo through our interpreter was indeed delightful and was a real education.
As we were seated at our table, where a three-course meal was served (which was scrumptious by the way), I was delighted to get acquainted with Deaf Japanese guests and we exchanged cultural and life experiences. There were also two Deaf Japanese children who were a pleasure to have on my table. The girl, aged 10 years old, proudly presented her JSL poetry which gave me goosebumps, as it was presented so visually and emotionally. Richard Carter – the infamous BSL poet was also in awe and filmed the performance. The children explained that they came from a Deaf school which was founded 10 years ago and relied on JSL as their main communication method. I also learnt that Japan have a strong Disability inclusion policy in the workforce. Such positive vibes were flowing from the Japanese Deaf people and some of them worked for Out-sourcing. If only the UK could adopt the same policy, as there is a high unemployment rate amongst Deaf people who have struggled to gain employment in the hearing workplace.” – Nikki Stratton, Deaffest Co-Founder and Co-Director
With the beautiful weather that day, the bustling atmosphere among the vast green field at the Clubhouse of Guards Polo Club was treated to the sight of the British Driving Society Show parade and the final Polo match, as well as the presence of HM Queen Elizabeth II and HRH Prince Philip. Patron of Deaffest Rachel Shenton also attended the event, along with star of the Oscar-winning film The Silent Child, Maisie Sly, who presented the Queen with flowers!
The Polo match commenced at 3pm and, as is traditional, when the match was over, visitors would cover the patches on the ground left by the hooves with grass!
“It was an honour to be invited to attend this unique event, and I’m sure that many others will agree that the day was truly pleasant, filled with warm smiles and laughter. Seeing the Queen was a particular highlight. Above all, I am so grateful to Out-sourcing for inviting me to share this day, it was indeed a memorable one that will not be forgotten for years to come.” – Nikki Stratton, Deaffest Co-Founder and Co-Director