A Berwick invention is helping blind and vision impaired people navigate their fridge

A SIMPLE yet innovative invention has been developed in Berwick to help blind and vision impaired children become more confident in the kitchen.

Noah and Christian with Kate Garam who helped design a new system to help blind and vision impaired people find food in the fridge more easily.

Image: Noah and Christian with Kate Garam who helped design a new system to help blind and vision impaired people find food in the fridge more easily.

A SIMPLE yet innovative invention has been developed in Berwick to help blind and vision impaired children become more confident in the kitchen.

The food finder is a braille and large print map fixed to the fridge door, which helps children know exactly where certain foods are located in the fridge.

Monash University occupational therapy masters students Kate Garam and Judy Stampton developed the map to help make students more independent.

”You would be amazed at the changes in the kids when they learn to do something for themselves,” Ms Stampton said.

Ms Garam said she hoped the map would encourage children to cook or help others cook.

She said the idea took six months to develop and agreed it was surprising that such a thing was not already available.

She said she hoped the idea could be adapted for blind and vision impaired people’s homes to help them navigate their tool sheds, closets and other areas of the house.

“The kids say they really love it, they say it’s really nice to be able to read it, whether it’s braille or large print, and they love the fact that for the first part of the lesson they can read the recipe, work out what ingredients it needs and find them in the fridge,” she said.

Insight school principal Timothy Hemphill said as well as the standard curriculum the school offered a range of projects to help improve blind students’ independence and life skills.

“Nearly 70 per cent of blind adults are unemployed,” he said.

“The former ‘integration’ schools model has not provided the framework for life skills or future employment.”

Source article: Herald Sun/Berwick Leader