Orientation and Mobility for Children,
Adolescents, and Families
Orientation and Mobility (O&M) is an essential life skill for young people who are blind or vision impaired.
Generally speaking, young people with normal vision rely on their sight to move about home, school and the community. Young people with impaired vision however, need to acquire a specialised set of competencies (O&M skills, concepts, and strategies) to be able to move about their environments safely, effectively, efficiently, and with increased independence and curiosity. A well-designed and delivered O&M program can equip your child or adolescent with age/stage-relevant O&M competencies.
An O&M assessment and instruction program will help establish a solid foundation for your child/adolescent’s social, physical, psychological and emotional development and well-being, as he/she transitions from infancy, through childhood and adolescence, to adulthood.
While each young person’s program will be different, our O&M assessment and instruction programs focus on, three main interconnected areas:
- The Child/Adolescent – use of senses; posture/gait/balance; body concepts; spatial concepts; orientation skills; mobility skills; use of O&M equipment – visual aids, a cane, electronic travel aids; problem-solving and use of judgement; use of maps, apps and compass directions etc.
- The Physical Environment – the layout of home, school, community venues/facilities; landmarks and clues; understanding traffic and road crossings; public transport; access and safety etc.
- The Social Environment – social literacy; communication skills; social conventions; risk and safety assessment; independence- dependence-interdependence; personal safety strategies etc.
Central to any effective O&M is early intervention, regular functional assessments, and a high quality, individualised program (based on assessment) to meet your child/adolescent’s needs. Also critical to a young person’s acquisition of O&M competencies is the family’s understanding, encouragement and consistent reinforcement of a child’s O&M within the daily routines of the family.
Blind Focus is able to provide specialised and individualised O&M assessment and instruction for children and adolescents who are blind or have low vision. We can also provide independent advice, support, information and resources about O&M to families, educators and therapists working with children and adolescents living with vision impairments.
Please contact us to discuss your child/adolescent’s individual situation.
The fees for Blind Focus Orientation and Mobility Assessment and Instruction Services, for NDIS participants, are set in accordance with the NDIS Price Guide and NDIS Support Catalogue.
The fees for providing O&M Assessment and Instruction Services, to all other people not covered by an NDIS plan are negotiated on a case-by-case basis.
At Blind Focus we are experts in designing and delivering a personalised program of O&M assessment and instruction that will meet your individual needs, goals, and lifestyle. Please contact us to discuss your individual situation.