Lachlan’s early intervention program with RIDBC has supported him to develop the concepts, language and physical skills needed to develop his Braille reading and writing skills.
When Lachlan was only four months old his parents, Cameron and Janine, were given the news that he was completely blind.
“We suspected Lachlan had a vision problem when he was just 6 weeks old, but had no idea he was completely blind,” said Janine. “When the doctor started explaining that Lachlan would use a white cane and be a Braille reader we were nervous about what the future held for our baby boy.”
Lachlan began receiving services from RIDBC Early Learning Program (Vision Impairment) at 5 months of age.
“RIDBC is such a huge part of our lives, it would be hard to imagine what it would be like without their help and support. When Lachlan was a baby, we were shown ways to encourage Lachlan to play, move and explore his environment, which doesn’t always come naturally to a child who is blind,” said Janine.
Structured play activities and learning to play with specific toys helped Lachlan to develop finger strength and dexterity in readiness for braille.
“RIDBC has shown us activities to assist Lachlan to develop his finger strength for using Braille, for example, pulling suction toys off a table and pushing and pulling golf tees through polystyrene blocks,” said Janine.
Lachlan continues to progress at preschool.
“Since attending RIDBC’s VisionEd preschool from the start of this year, Lachlan is enjoying finding the Braille signage and asking what the words say,” said Janine.
“My husband Cameron and I are currently learning Braille through RIDBC’s UEB Online course. This course enables sighted people to learn Braille and will allow our family to gain the skills needed to help Lachlan with reading and writing in the future.”
Cameron and Janine are optimistic for the future.
“Our dreams for Lachlan are simple. We want him to have a happy childhood and would love for him to attend the local primary school with his big brother Joshua,” said Janine.
To learn more about UEB Online visit uebonline.org.