The Blind Need Our Support First
For most people who don’t struggle with the everyday challenges associated with being either blind or sight-impaired, it is difficult if not impossible to fully empathize with those that are blind. As hard as one might attempt to imagine the challenges of living in a world of darkness, it is really not possible to fully imagine the struggles the blind face unless one is in fact blind himself. It is likely that if one were to ask the blind what they most want from people who can see, they would simply answer that they wish to be treated as people with the same goals, dreams and desires as anyone else. Rather than spending time feeling sorry for someone who can’t see, it is far better to discover how to become an advocate for them to achieve their full potential.
Supporting the Blind Starts Simply
There are a wide variety of ways to provide this support; they range from doing something as simple as getting educated about the challenges the blind face to petitioning government and business leaders to become more blind-aware and blind-friendly. One could also set aside concerns or anxieties about making connections with the blind and become friends with someone who deals with the challenges of being sight-impaired. Both parties would be better as a result of this kind of engagement. Blind people want most of all to be treated as equals to those who can see. They deserve the same treatment and respect that should be afforded to anyone, regardless of how they might be “different.” More particularly, the blind today need someone who believes in their causes, whether those causes involve learning and promoting the use of Braille, increasing access to employment and education, or advocating for changes in legislation. The best way to support the blind is do something. Getting started is often the best way to overcome fears or concerns about offending. It’s like learning Braille. You learn it one dot at a time. Eventually you’ll get it right. Everyone can begin somewhere to make a positive difference.