Live Virtual Assistance to Individuals Who Are Visually Impaired
Be My Eyes is a free tool that connects users who are visually impaired with a global community of volunteers ready at a moment’s notice to help them “see”—to lend their eyesight and support with everyday tasks. The multilingual support community is millions strong, available globally day or night, and has volunteers answering calls in more than 185 languages. The free visual support includes tasks such as reading small print, matching clothes, troubleshooting technology, setting up home appliances, or any other simple task a volunteer can complete over live video. Anyone 17 or older may sign up as a user or volunteer. The calls are connected based on daytime time zone and language; the average wait time is about 15 seconds. When a call is answered, a live one-way video (two-way audio) is initiated, allowing volunteers to see what’s in front of the user’s camera and provide verbal support. The app is available for iOS and Android devices. Cost: Free app
When a young child has autism, screening for hearing loss and visualimpairment can be difficult. A number of resources are available to help families and professionals work together to appropriately screen these children and address their special needs effectively. These include explanations of autism-like behaviors, an online webinar series exploring multidisciplinary perspectives on these disorders, suggestions for writing measurable IEP goals, and a video of revealing moments of children with Asperger’s syndrome and their parents
The American Council of the Blind’s Audio Description Project (ACB-ADP) and the Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) are cosponsoring the Benefits of Audio Description in Education (BADIE) contest, an opportunity for young people, aged 7 to 21, who are blind and visually impaired to win prizes for themselves and their teacher, as well as recognition for their school.