Since being certified leagally blind in November 2017 Monica has 20% of vision in her left eye and 5% in her right.
While the impact of her sudden loss of sight has been devestating and initially overwhelming for her, my fiercly determined sister is doing every thing she can to maintain her independence and continue to live her life in London where she has resided for 30 years. Monica has even taken me shopping in Oxford street, an experience that was much more terrifying for me than for her!!!
With the help of the RNIB, Monica has explored a number of aids and equipment which can assist her to maintain her indepedence around the home and in the community. While these items can be expensive, some are available at reduced cost or funded by various goverment agencies or charitable trusts.
Of all the inevitable changes living as a sigficantly visually impaired person brings to her life, the one felt most intensely by Monica is the inability to read. As an avid reader of fiction and newspapers on a dialy basis the impact of this loss of daily pelasure is difficult to accept but it is the more practical loss of the ability to read that is having the most impact on her daily life.
With all of the advances in technology it is not surprising that there is a solution at hand to assit the visually imparied in this area. The Or Cam is a breakthrough, wearable artifical vision device which reads printed and digital text aloud via a lightweight smart camera, and, amoung other things, can recognise faces, products and money.
At a cost of £3,500 the latest version of theOr Cam is discreet, portable , easy to use and uses blue tooth technology to read the text via wireless headphones. The applications in Monica's daily life are endless but importantly as a diabetic being able to read the ingredients and carbohydrate values of food is vital to manginging her diabetes effectiviely. Additonally the ability to read her own mail will lesson her dependence on others and enable her to manage her day to day life independently.
To date Monica has secured funding, via a charitiable trust for, £2,000 and we are now hoping to raise the gap of £1,500 to purchase this life changing device.
Any assistiance you could give will be greatly appreciated.
Cathy Carroll (Sister)