Exchange Club

Image of Exchange Club members Albert Brown and Paul Griffith

The Exchange Club meets on a weekly basis to talk about different technology, such as mobile phones and computers, and how devices can be used in the most accessible way for people who are blind or vision impaired.

In this era of fast moving technology, many devices now come with built in accessibility features which make things like texting, email and social media easy to navigate. The group help each other with any problems and teach new users how to make the most of their technology. This hands on approach facilitates each individual’s unique learning requirements in an environment where there’s no such thing as a stupid question!

Participants in the group vary from people who have been using assistive and accessible technology for years to those who are just getting started. People share their accumulated knowledge, which often negates the need to depend on remote call centres whose agents are often unfamiliar with or untrained in the specific needs of people who are visually impaired.

Topics covered in the club to date have included social media platforms, iPhones, android phones, tablets, apps, troubleshooting, websites and instant messaging. The group consider the greatest technology breakthrough to be the ability to fully join in with the global texting community and be increasingly connected through technology.

  • Even though technology has become more accessible and easier to use, the participants of the Exchange Club would like to see the following developments so that this progress continues;
  • greater understanding among providers that upgrades are not always compatible with the existing visual impairment enabling solutions,
  • all sites become WC3 compliant,
  • the labelling of apps,
  • dedicated call-centre agents who are specifically trained to understand the needs of people with a visual impairment.

The Exchange Club has been running successfully since January 2012, helping people master the challenges and opportunities that technology offers all of us, whether sighted or vision-impaired.

The Exchange Club meets on Monday mornings from 11am to 1pm. The venue is the Insight Counselling Service, 3rd Floor, 7 Ely Place, Dublin 2. If you would like any more information, please contact John or Ann at 01 674 6496 or email insight@fightingblindness.ie.

If you have any questions or helpful suggestions, please don’t hesitate to contact us and we will pass them on to the group.