Proof Small Ideas Grow

During the 69th National Convention of the Blinded Veterans Association, a rather miraculous event occurred. Proving the motto, “Blind Veterans helping Blind Veterans,” the Technology Association for Veterans with Visual Impairments (TAVVI) conducted an iOS training session. Nearly 70 participants attended, receiving one on one or small group instructions on the iOS platform from their fellow blinded Veterans.

In the past, the closest thing to this involved a blind Veteran discussing their experiences and advice with technology or services. The TAVVI coordinated, developed or compiled the materials, recruited trainers, and executed a program on par with a Blind Rehabilitation program.  This action stands out as special, since it demonstrates the capabilities a small group of non-expert peers may accomplish.

The idea for this event started just like the TAVVI did, with a couple of blind Veterans talking. The TAVVI started out after a conversation acknowledging multiple barriers for blinded Veterans to succeed with technology. The concept for the iOS training stemmed from a thought that peer support provides equally effective training as a formalized program. Pulling together our resources and knowledge, we managed to deliver.

The TAVVI is actually a working group attached to the BVA. Officially recognized by the BVA during its mid year board meeting in 2014, its the brain child of several individuals, collaborating over a several year stretch. For more information click here.