Guide Dogs NSW /ACT is providing assistance to people who are vision impaired and transitioning into the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
According to the organisation, which is a registered NDIS service provider, NDIS offers a significant advancement in the provision of disability support, training and services for people who are blind or vision impaired.
Guide Dogs NSW/ACT General Manager Client Services, Frances Tinsley, said the services offered help people realise that vision loss does not have to limit their independence.
“From learning how to use a long cane or a Guide Dog to talking GPS software and practical strategies for safely crossing roads, our services enable people with vision loss to get to school, university, work, sport, social events or wherever it is they need to go,” she said.
A great example of the positive change of the NDIS is from Cathryn Gilewski, who lives in the Hunter.
“I was so used to having no control over my choices,” she said. “So I didn’t dream of anything. Whereas now, I’m thinking I might be able to get out and bush walk again. I might be able to go to a medical appointment when it is made for me and not have to wait for my husband to get a day off.”
NDIS plans for those who have vision loss have included provisions for Orientation and Mobility training with a long cane and personalised Guide Dog NSW/ACT programs tailored to meet the lifestyle needs of each individual, and delivered in the person’s home, community or work environment.
“While training Guide Dogs is an important part of our work, our most common program is showing people with impaired vision how to safely move through different environments, using a range of mobility aids and electronic devices,” Ms Tinsley said.
If you know someone with vision loss who could benefit from the Scheme, please contact Guide Dogs on 02 9412 9300 to find out how then can help.