Eye-Opening Presentation about Rethinking Blindness

Oswego, NY: On February 23, Oswego County Opportunities bus drivers stayed after their regular shifts for training by members of the Vision Network. Marie Kouthoofd, an instructor at the Fulton Campus of Cayuga County Community College who is also blind, led the training and challenged drivers to rethink their concept of blindness.

She introduced a short comedic skit entitled, “What do you do when you meet a blind guy.”

Marie Kouthoofd addressing the OCO Bus Drivers.
Marie Kouthoofd addressing the OCO Bus Drivers.

The skit was performed by Alex Kouthoofd and Nicholas Cocks. The performance used comedy and slapstick to convey a very complex yet simple message about blindness: treat everyone as a person and an individual, and do not assume that people who are blind need help.

Kouthoofd then turned the presentation to Sabine Ingerson, director of the ARISE Oswego County Offices. Ingerson provided a general overview of the resources available in Oswego County for people with disabilities.

The Vision Network is an advocacy and support group made up of people who are blind or have vision loss, and representatives from ARISE, Fulton Lion’s Club, OCO, OCVI, and the Office for the Aging.

Its goal is to promote the independence of people with low vision by making Oswego County more accessible. The Vision Network has been instrumental in continuing Call-N-Ride, an affordable curb-to-curb bus service for people with disabilities and the elderly. Funding for the service is provided by Constellation Energy.

Join the Vision Network or arrange for a presentation by contacting Ingerson at 342-4088 ext. 210.