Vision Australia is the nation's largest provider of blindness and low vision services. They deliver vital programmes to people of all ages, in their homes, in the community and at their local centres.
The loss of sight often leads to a loss of independence and confidence too. Vision Australia Orientation and Mobility (O&M) Specialists offer training and support for people who are blind or have low vision to enable them to get back on their feet.
Through one-on-one programmes, clients learn how to travel wherever they need to go confidently, safely, and independently.
"Whether a client wants to travel across the country, across town or just to their own letterbox, we will help them get there," says Tracy Spath an O&M Specialist.Planes, trains or automobiles
Because everybody explores their world in different ways, O&M Specialists seek to understand every client's goals and lifestyle. Training is then tailored to suit their individual needs. Vision Australia helps people develop the confidence to walk on footpaths and cross the road; the know-how to use public transport; and the tools to stay safe at all times.'Reading' elbows - the freedom to ask anyone to help
Vision Australia O&M specialists teach clients how to hold someone's elbow in a special way that
allows them to be guided safely and confidently. Simply through touch, a person can tell where their guide is going – left or right, upstairs or down. This gives people the freedom to ask for assistance wherever they are.Hear, smell, feel
When a person cannot see, it's important they use their other senses effectively. O&M training can help someone learn how to use their ears, nose and hands to work out where they are, what's going on around them and how to stay safe.A device to suit everybody
People who have low vision may wish to use a mobility device to help them get around. O&M specialists provide an assessment to decide which aid best suits a person's lifestyle. Whichever device they choose, we offer all the training a client needs to use their mobility device safely
and effectively.Because life doesn't stand still
As the life of someone who is blind changes, Vision Australia is by their side. For someone who is starting a new school or a new job, or simply moving home, O&M specialists can assess the new environment and provide suggestions on how to make sure it is as accessible and safe as possible.
With more Australians than ever losing their sight to conditions like diabetes and macular degeneration, Vision Australia urgently needs more funds to continue their work.
Your donation to Vision Australia will enable them to give specialised and individualised support free to thousands of Australians like Heidi who are blind or have low vision.