Understanding the needs of blind and partially sighted people
A 2009 study to gain an understanding of the experiences, needs and expectations of blind and partially sighted people and how they can be supported.
Title: Understanding the needs of blind and partially sighted people: their experiences, perspectives, and expectations.
Author: SSMR at the University of Surrey, Publisher: SSMR, on behalf of RNIB
The overall aims of the research were:
- to gain an understanding of the experiences, needs and expectations of blind and partially sighted people
- to explore ways in which they can be supported to lead independent and fulfilling lives; and to investigate how needs change over time. This report presents a summary of information collected through in-depth interviews with people who are blind and partially sighted. Recommendations are also included.
The report presents a wide range of experiences in the participants' own words. An overview of some of the themes explored includes:
- key life changes, especially the loss of independence
- support received by participants, as reported
- employment (challenges in obtaining work and receiving adequate support within work)
- emotional support
- information needs (what information, where to obtain it, provision in suitable formats)
- transport (public services, cost, environment)
- education (mainstream, specialist, and further education institutions)
- enablement (making the most of residual sight and encouraging independence).