Did you know, 70 per cent of the services and support offered by Guide Dogs is not dog related? This is of course in addition to the cute superhero dogs who provide incredible support to people with low vision or blindness.
Guide Dogs Victoria, a recipient of Coca-Cola Australia Foundation Employee Connected Grants, designed and delivered a social skills program, We Need to Talk, for teenagers living with low vision or blindness.
The program enabled nine teenagers to connect with specialists such as physiotherapists, stylists, and dieticians on various topics including communications, presence and posture, personal presentation, health and wellbeing and social opportunities.
The practical hands on program enabled these young people to develop skills they need to be more confident, build lasting friendships and improve their wellbeing.
Rachel Henningham, Guide Dogs Victoria Team Leader – Children’s Mobility Service, said “Children with low vision or blindness live in a visual world. They require a unique set of skills to learn how to navigate their world to lead them to the same opportunities as their sighted peers. A large piece of this is social opportunities and inclusion. These young people shared experiences and drew on guidance from professional speakers and mentors to give them the confidence and motivation to participate in social situations.
Guide Dogs Victoria thank the Coca-Cola Australia Foundation for the opportunity to develop and deliver this program that will have a lasting impact on the teens beyond their school years and into adulthood.”
For Luke Pupillo, Business Development Executive, Victoria, supporting Guide Dogs Victoria was something close to his heart as a member of his family will need the support of this charity and program in the future.
“Guide Dogs Victoria is such an important organisation for people with low vision and blindness, and for my family, programs like this one, will provide the support for my family member but also others, to grow and be more active in the community.”
THE COCA-COLA AUSTRALIA FOUNDATION IS A PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN COCA-COLA SOUTH PACIFIC AND CCEP AUSTRALIA. LEARN MORE ABOUT CCAF PROGRAM.