Advocacy & Outreach Raising awareness and promoting understanding

Advocacy and Outreach

Vision Rehabilitation is a vital component in empowering individuals with visual impairments to embrace independence and experience lives filled with purpose. At Vision-Aid, we understand that the effectiveness and accessibility of vision rehabilitation services are closely tied to numerous advocacy and community outreach activities.

Advocacy and outreach are vital components that raise awareness, promote understanding, and ensure access to necessary resources and support for individuals with visual impairments.

 

Advocacy

Advocacy efforts help raise public awareness about the challenges faced by individuals with visual impairments and Vision-Aid’s vision and mission.

We firmly believe in the transformative power of raising awareness and actively engaging with communities. Our goal at Vision-Aid is to ensure that every individual with a visual impairment has equal access to the support and resources they require.

'Participation in national and international conferences ( October 2022)

Optometry conference between 13 – 15th October 2022, organized by India Vision Institute

Participation in national and international conferences (November 2022)

OPTO VISTA 2022, a continuing optometry education November 27, 2022 (Sunday) at Madurai

Lecture on “Recent advancements of Low vision devices
& Rehabilitative approach” at the Regional Institute of Ophthalmology, Chennai

Activities of Advocacy at partner locations:

Advocate best practices of Holistic rehabilitation:

Sankara Nethralaya Vision-Aid resource center advocates holistic rehabilitation to infants, young children with visual impairment or visual impairment with multiple disability, to receive visual developmental therapy, sensory integration, fine motor development, eye-hand coordination, behavior management, remedial education, and services for additional interventions like physiotherapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy.

Library of Essential assistive devices and Aids

A library of all essential assistive devices and aids at the

Vision-Aid resource center of VHS – Vision-Aid resource center.

Education and Training:

Vision-Aid promotes activities like conducting workshops, seminars, and awareness campaigns to educate the public, healthcare professionals, educators, employers, and policymakers about visual impairments and the importance of vision rehabilitation services and best practices. Promote the benefits of early intervention and the use of assistive technologies.

Professional training programs

Vision-Aid and the LV Prasad Eye Institute in Hyderabad offers two professional educational programs

Orientation programs for professionals:

CECF Vision-Aid Resource Centre organizes Low Vision Orientation programs during conferences. They showcase mobility training for the blind, and various low-vision devices, and provided hands-on training for low-vision aids.

Continuous Medical Education for vision technicians:

There are more than 100 vision centers in the Aravind eye care system. Educational sessions for technicians of vision centers on Vision Rehabilitation and Early Intervention are conducted periodically.

Outreach activities:

Vision-Aid resource centers located around India have been strong supporters of outreach activities and help in bringing services to all the underserved areas.

Below are glimpses of the outreach activities

Aravind Eye Hospital, Madurai

Tele-screening: At Aravind- Vision-Aid resource center -Conducts regular outreach activities and an online camp was conducted with the Govt Pediatric hospital and staff of District Early Intervention Centers of Virudhunagar, a rural district of the south zone of Tamil Nadu.

Dr. Shroffs’ Vision-aid resource center

Screening camps that benefitted hundreds of individuals conducted at Gorakhpur (UP) by the Shroff-Vision-Aid Delhi team in collaboration with Project Prakash & Basic Education Department Gorakhpur.

Community eye care foundation Pune

A fully equipped Mobile clinic visits other clinics, Hospitals, and educational institutions to examine and dispense LVAs and guide the patients about further rehabilitation.

The Voluntary Health Services Hospital Chennai

Multi-specialty camp for mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS)

Project IDI:

Centre For Sight conducts vision screening camp at our center in Agra. Screening children for multiple disability and visual disorders is a regular activity of the centre.

A Digital Accessibility Testing Testimonial | Nibin Mathews

Nibin Mathews’ journey is a testament to resilience and determination. Despite facing

significant visual impairment challenges since birth, Nibin pursued education with unwavering determination. Losing sight in one eye due to a cricket ball stroke in 6th grade and later losing vision in the other eye to glaucoma didn’t deter him. He completed his Bachelor’s in English and even secured a job with Indian Railways. Yet, his thirst for knowledge led him to pursue computer programming, which he found through Vision-Aid. With their specialized training, he mastered coding and digital accessibility testing. With their financial support, he pursued a Master’s degree. Now, as the Accessibility Lead at Bosch Global Software Technologies, he’s excelling professionally. But Nibin’s achievements don’t stop there; he’s also an international tennis champion and a skilled violinist. He attributes much of his success to Vision-Aid, acknowledging their pivotal role in his journey. His story is not just one of personal triumph but also a testament to the impact of support systems in overcoming challenges and inspiring others.

A Job Coaching for Banking and other exams Testimonial | Gautam Gulati

Meet Gautam, a remarkable individual based in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh, whose life story is a testament to resilience, determination, and the transformative power of organizations like Vision-Aid India.

Gautam’s life commenced with the diagnosis of Retinist Pigmentosa. Despite experiencing a 40% loss of sight, he persevered through attending a regular school, successfully completing his education and earning a B Com degree. His world took an unexpected turn after graduation, when, he had the major sight loss. Faced with the challenges of navigating everyday activities like driving, reading, writing print, and mobility etc. Yet, rather than allowing these obstacles to define him, he chose a path of resilience and determination. Undeterred by his circumstances, Gautam turned to technology, becoming dependent on tools designed for visually impaired individuals, including screen readers. His quest for independence led him to explore new technologies with the support of various NGOs. Through his social networks, Gautam discovered Vision-Aid India, an organization dedicated to empowering the visually impaired. Recognizing the potential for growth, he enrolled in Vision-Aid’s IBPS banking crash course, specifically tailored for visually impaired individuals, in April 2022.

Determined to enhance his skills further, Gautam pursued an additional course in mobile technology. This commitment to personal and professional growth showcased his unwavering spirit and determination.

Armed with newfound knowledge, Gautam faced the Bank of India Credit Officer exam after completing the IBPS crash course. His hard work, coupled with the right guidance from Vision-Aid, resulted in success. In 2023, Gautam proudly joined Bank of India as a Credit Officer, marking a significant milestone in his journey.

Gautam attributes his success and newfound independence to Vision-Aid India. With deep gratitude, he acknowledges the organization’s role in providing IBPS coaching and shaping his path towards independence.

A Python Testimonial

Tejas

Tejas, born with visual impairment in Mumbai, pursued his education at a Blind School. After school, he graduated from St. Xavier’s College in 2007. His quest for technology education led him to NIIT Bangalore, but job challenges followed. He worked as an HR Recruiter at Thomson Reuters but continued his search for software engineering opportunities. Tejas found his path at Vision-Aid India, where he gained certifications in JavaScript, CSS, HTML, Python, and Digital Accessibility Testing. Vision-Aid then helped him secure a role as an Associate Software Engineer at Pristine InfoTech Inc. He’s deeply grateful to Vision-Aid for enabling visually impaired individuals to learn software languages and work independently as software engineers.

Bindhu Sri

Meet Bindu, from Hyderabad. Who began her life with the gift of perfect vision? She embarked on her educational journey in a conventional school, but at the tender age of 9, her world dimmed as Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) impacted her sight. Loosing major of her vision with lot of challenges she still could complete her graduate degree in 2020 and her post-graduate degree in 2022. Being interested to pursue her career in computer programming she discovered Vision-Aid India, a beacon of hope and opportunity. Enrolling in their online certification programs, Bindu successfully completed both Python and SQL languages. Armed with these newfound skills, she opened doors to her career, securing a position as a Data Engineer at RX Data Science, a renowned company.

“All of this was made possible through the invaluable support and guidance provided by Vision-Aid India” She Says.

A HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and ARIA Fundamentals for Accessible Web Development Testimonial

Tejas

Tejas, born with visual impairment in Mumbai, pursued his education at a Blind School. After school, he graduated from St. Xavier’s College in 2007. His quest for technology education led him to NIIT Bangalore, but job challenges followed. He worked as an HR Recruiter at Thomson Reuters but continued his search for software engineering opportunities. Tejas found his path at Vision-Aid India, where he gained certifications in JavaScript, CSS, HTML, Python, and Digital Accessibility Testing. Vision-Aid then helped him secure a role as an Associate Software Engineer at Pristine InfoTech Inc. He’s deeply grateful to Vision-Aid for enabling visually impaired individuals to learn software languages and work independently as software engineers.