Here are some tips for you if you’re ever working with or interacting with someone who is blind or visually impaired:
Tip 1: When entering a room or conversation, introduce yourself when arriving, even if the person knows who you are. Also, let the person know when you’re leaving the room.
Tip 2: Ask the person if they need help before you start helping them. Never assume they need help.
Tip 3: If the person asks for help or says yes to your offer, some options of how to help are by:
- Offering human guide or sighted guide
- Offering specific directions using directional words or clock face words to help them know where things are
Tip 4: If you are going to be offering directions to the person, here are some examples of directional words and clock face words to use:
- Directional words: left, right, in front of, behind
- Clock face words: “this item is on the table to your two o’clock”
Tip 5: Speak directly to the person who is blind or visually impaired, not to their guide. If they have a guide dog, get the person’s approval before petting it.
For additional information on services we provide to individuals of all ages who are blind and visually impaired, please call 603-224-4039 or email [email protected].
About the Author: Lindsay Stratton is a Teacher of the Visually Impaired (TVI) and Orientation & Mobility Specialist at Future In Sight.