NCBI launches its Understanding Low Vision video to educate public about sight loss spectrum

The opening graphic for the Understanding Low Vision video has a navy background and two orange blob designs in the top right and bottom left hand corners. There are twinkling star designs on the image as well and the title Understanding Low Vision is written across the middle of the image on a white background.

Monday 6th March 2023, NCBI is today releasing our Understanding Low Vision video which aims to educate members of the public about sight loss and how they should interact with people who have sight loss conditions and who have different sight and life experiences as a result.

NCBI’s Low Vision Project Group, which is comprised of people with different sight loss conditions and who have different lived experiences of sight loss, wrote and produced the video, in which they explain to the public that sight loss is a spectrum that affects people in different ways. As such, members of the public should be aware that how they interact with people with sight loss will vary from person to person, based on what their needs are.

Two members of the project group, Robert Thompson and Geraldine O’Dwyer, featured in the Low Vision Video, and they both used the opportunity to explain their experiences and their needs from their own perspectives.

Robert said: “This video will hopefully be a very important tool in educating members of the public about sight loss and the experiences of people who are blind or vision impaired. After I became blind, I became a guide dog user and this has helped me to maintain my independence, which many people might not understand is possible. On the other hand, I do sometimes need assistance and if I do, I will ask for it and hopefully members of the public will oblige. It’s important that people don’t assume anything about people who are blind or vision impaired but be prepared to be helpful and listen to us.”

Ms O’Dwyer added: “I was not born with low vision, so I’m currently going through an adjustment period as my sight changes. I now use a symbol cane, which is intended to indicate to people that I have a vision impairment. People may not  understand that while I have low vision, I can still do everyday things like shopping or using my smart phone.

Hopefully our video gives the public an insight into how those of us with low vision may have different degrees of sight loss, which affects how each of us lives our lives.”

NCBI’s Understanding Low Vision video is available to watch on NCBI’s YouTube channel, which also contains other resources related to sight loss. We would encourage anyone who is seeking information about sight loss or the experiences of others who have sight loss, to subscribe to the NCBI YouTube channel, which is regularly updated with informative videos and podcast interviews.

Anyone who is living with sight loss and requires assistance can contact NCBI on our dedicated Infoline at 1800 911 250 to learn about the services, supports and training that NCBI can provide to help.