Children with Visual Impairment Project

Reading textbook in Braille
120 textbook titles and 20 novels have been converted in Macedonian and Albanian Braille

WHAT IS THE CHILDREN WITH VISUAL IMPAIRMENT PROJECT?

The USAID Children with Visual Impairment Project, in partnership with the Lions Club International Foundation, increases the quality and availability of educational services for students with visual impairments; increases the availability of social and medical services and access to information for visually impaired people; and enhances the work-readiness of participating visually impaired youth.

WHAT HAS BEEN ACCOMPLISHED?

  • Strengthened Resource Centers: Five resource centers for the visually impaired are being enriched with Braille reading materials. One hundred and twenty textbooks and an additional 20 novels have been converted in Macedonian and Albanian Braille. In addition, 76 audio books have been recorded. Over 200 special educators and 200 teachers from across North Macedonia have received support and training at the resource centers. The project organizes inclusive sports, art and outdoor activities for nearly 100 visually impaired children on a regular basis.
  • Increase in Eye Screenings: Over 31,000 children have been screened to date. As a result of the eye-screenings, many children have been referred for further diagnostics and timely treatment. The project conducts targeted presentations for parents, and distributes leaflets about the Lions Eye Health Program and organizes events to raise public awareness about the challenges faced by the visually impaired. 
  • Improved Support System for the Visually Impaired: A newly set up Red Cross Support Center for Visually Impaired People in Skopje provides various services to over 200 beneficiaries including regular psychological and career counseling sessions, skills development to increase work-readiness (certified training courses for IT skills, English language, Braille literacy, soft-skills workshops, mobility and orientation), sports (regular swimming lessons, hikes) and arts workshops to assist visually impaired people socialize and live healthier lifestyles.

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Last updated: July 11, 2019

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