On February 1 this year, a non-governmental organization of visually impaired people ‘Divosvіt’ began the project ‘White cane – be independent’ in Transcarpathia, with the support of the Netherlands charity funds network for Central and Eastern Europe in partnership with the ICF ‘Development Fund of Carpathian Euroregion’.
During the event, from 20th till 30th of April, trainings in orientation and mobility, in which 20 blind people from different parts of Transcarpathia take part, are taking place in Uzhgorod. As Oksana Bogdanets, a regional organization chairperson, described, during the selection of participants of trainings the priority was given to young people with disabilities who want to be independent, get an education and find a job. Therefore, during these ten days, they are gradually learning the city streets, pedestrian crossings, social service agencies.
‘The participation in the life of society on an equal basis with others for the persons with visual impairments means that such people have a need or desire to attend the same schools as other citizens, to work at the same enterprises, to study in regular schools and universities. But for people with visual impairments one of the most difficult barriers to do it all is the problem of the elementary movement in the streets and orientation in space. The man who is constantly accompanied by an assistant cannot be free and self-sufficient’, said Oksana. That’s why they are planning to introduce a new social service in the center, namely, permanent training courses for the blind in Transcarpathia to use a cane and move independently around the towns of the region.