Gadgets help blind to be independent

Margaret Forbes and Paul Maddison with his guide dog Shane talking about the latest gadgets at the Action for Blind People open day at the Quayside Exchange.
Margaret Forbes and Paul Maddison with his guide dog Shane talking about the latest gadgets at the Action for Blind People open day at the Quayside Exchange.
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BLIND and partially sighted people have been trying out technology that could change their lives forever.

Action for Blind People held a special open day in Sunderland to introduce those with sight impairments to the latest gadgets which could help them lead a more independent life.

The impressive array of devices proved a massive hit with those attending the event.

The day, held at the Quayside Exchange in Low Street, also showed those with sight impairments how equipment can help them gain or retain employment.

Many partially sighted people say getting a job is made all the more difficult by the prejudice often associated with vision impairments.

Among the gadgets on show were computers fitted with speech output or magnification. These are designed to give people access to information and assist them in the workplace.

There were also displays of CCTVs, scanners, mobile talking phones and other gadgets which help people with limited sight communicate and get out and about.

The exhibition opened with a display by the Guide Dogs’ North East display team, with the animals showing their skills at helping their owners.

Action for Blind People, which is part of the Royal National Institute for the Blind, offers a range of services to people with sight loss, including helping many register as blind or partially-sighted and creating personal action plans for them.

It also helps people deal with issues such as travel, leisure, housing, welfare rights, technology, employment and emotional support.

For further details of the charity, contact the employment team on 01642 233439 or middlesbrough@actionforblindpeople.org.uk.