Visually Impaired People Support

The Program Support for Visually Impaired People is an initiative undertaken by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, targeting visually impaired people of all ages living throughout Greece. The Program focuses on independent living and the social and psychological support of those affected. These two points are interrelated and should be addressed in parallel for greater efficiency in improving the quality of life for the people involved. Independent living is achieved by means of special training on orientation, mobility and daily living skills. The training is highly individualized and is adjusted to the age, state of vision (total loss of vision vs. partial vision loss), capabilities and particular needs of each individual. The methodology followed by the specialized trainers involves a variety of special techniques and the development of their other senses, enabling the blind to live independently and to become a more integral part of society. While the aforementioned training is vital for blind people, there is also the issue of psychological support and counseling for them and their families, especially given the current crisis, which has rendered this group of people more vulnerable. The Program Support for the Visually Impaired People is developed in two axes based on the aforementioned priorities for blind people, in order to have a holistic approach, with the participation of three organizations. The first axis involves the training of visually impaired people on orientation, mobility and daily living skills, and the second focuses on the social and psychological support of these people and their families.