We know from the people with disabilities whom we contacted before the project began that carers for blind people and people with vision impairment often do their daily activities for them, instead of assisting them with a self-reliant lifestyle. We found an urgent need for training for carers of blind people and people with vision impairment, so that they are provided with truly valuable support that suits their needs. To provide training of the highest quality, we decided to give the task of conducting the training to people with visual impairment.
Eighteen carers from Gdynia, Sopot and Rumia were given training on professional care for a person with visual impairment. The training was provided one-on-one (44-48 hours per person) and conducted by self-advocates with vision impairment. The sessions were conducted at the home of the trainer, and in locations such as a store, public transport, and a restaurant. To enable other people and organisations to benefit from our know-how, we created a training information pack, which we posted on our website. We also released a training brochure for carers, relatives of people with vision impairment, and organisations wishing to conduct similar training. We also held two meetings on the support available for people with vision impairment and their carers.
In the training, carers learnt to provide support for people with vision impairment in dealing with daily issues and in using senses other than sight. Due to the project, people who are assisted by carers can expect support that matches their needs.
We enabled four people with vision impairment to engage in self-advocacy. The training provided by self-advocates made eighteen people capable of applying better methods of support matching the needs of people with vision impairment. The project will help to make people with vision impairment more self-reliant, and reduce the level of social exclusion of this group.