White Cane Week gets rolling

Every year the Canadian Council of the Blind host White Cane Week to bring awareness to those who deal with visual impairment. Here in Regina, the week literally gets rolling with the Media Bowl-a-thon at the Golden Mile Lanes. Monday marked the 51st year of the event which brings together the media, City of Regina officials, Lions Club members, and those who are blind.

As of Monday, the media as won 27 games while the blind has taken 24 games. The best expression of the day game from one of the organizers which stated they don’t focus on the disadvantages of being blind, but rather focus on the advantages, which means educating the public on how independent visually impaired people can really be.

The Canadian Council for the Blind is a non-profit organization whose aim is to improve the quality of life for those who are visually impaired through mentoring, socializing, sports, advocacy, and more. The organization has been around since 1944 and has set up chapters in British Columbia-Yukon, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland.

Lions Clubs across Canada are also advocates for those who are visually impaired and offer support in several different ways. Over the years they have developed numerous programs to ease the life those who have poor to no vision. They collect used eye glasses and ship them to people who really need them, they help provide guide dogs, and created the SightFirst program which is a partnership with doctors to fight the major causes of blindness and assist those who are dealing with a visual impairment. According to Lions International, 1.1 billion people around the world suffer from near vision impairment because they don’t have glasses. In addition, it’s estimated 253 million globally have moderate to severe distance vision impairment or are completely blind.

Research and work continues in the field of vision to not only find a way to restore vision, but to support those who are blind live independently as much as possible. A job well done by all those who organized today’s media bowl at the Golden Mile Lanes.

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