Adult Orientation and Mobility Services.

Learn practical travel skills to get where you would like to go with confidence.
A person sitting in a cafe smiling at the camera.

What is Orientation and Mobility for Adults?

It’s important to be able to move safely and independently through the world to live life the way you want. Orientation and Mobility Services for adults offer practical skills to keep you moving with confidence.

Whether you’ve experienced long term low vision, a recent change in vision, or you’re gradually losing sight, our Orientation and Mobility Services can assist you to achieve your goals. This support is designed for people aged 18 years and above.

Goals our Orientation and Mobility Service for adults can support you with include:

  • Moving around your home and community safely
  • Navigating through both familiar and new environments
  • Assist you to travel independently to and around your new workplace
  • Continuing to do the things you love, like hobbies or activities
  • Increasing your confidence and independence.
A Guide Dogs staff member assisting an an older adult with navigating a handrail.

What kind of skills can I learn through Orientation and Mobility?

Whatever your goal may be, whether it’s learning to travel to and from work, picking the kids up from school, or to simply check the mail every morning, Orientation and Mobility Services can assist you in developing skills to move the way you want, when you want, to get where you want.

You’ll learn to map out and understand where you plan to go, and the safest way to get there. Orientation and Mobility for adults can support you to learn valuable, practical skills, such as:

  • Walking down the street to your local cafe
  • Learning how to use a long cane
  • Using public transport to access places
  • Using GPS and wayfinding devices
  • Learning to find your way when travelling at night

Each technique is carefully selected to assist you in moving towards your personal goals, both long-term and short-term. We can also assist your family members, friends and loved ones to develop skills to better support you.

There are many different technologies you can use to support you in your travel. The Orientation and Mobility Specialists can assist you in choosing the best suited technology that will help you reaching your goals.

Every training program is flexible and uniquely tailored to develop your confidence, independence and safety when moving around your home and community.

Close up image of the bottom half of a white cane on tactile tiles.

Who can benefit from Orientation and Mobility Services?

Regardless of your level of vision or experience, we can be there to support you in achieving your goals, at any age and any stage of life.

Our Orientation and Mobility Specialists provide flexible services based on your individual situation. They can meet you at home, in the community, provide services in person or through telepractice (e.g., over the phone, or on a video call). Orientation and Mobility service delivery can range from one session to several weeks of training sessions, depending on the specific skills involved. Your preferred supports, such as family members or co-workers, are also welcome to attend.

Our Orientation and Mobility Specialists are available at any stage if you need to refresh your skills or learn new orientation and mobility techniques to find your way with confidence. If your goals change over time, we can adapt our services to suit your individual needs.

What kind of technology is involved with Orientation and Mobility?

There are many different technologies that can support someone to achieve their Orientation and Mobility goals, including more traditional aids through to emerging technology devices. Orientation and Mobility Specialists can work with you to explore available options and determine which option may best fit your needs. Some commonly used technology includes:

Mobility Aids:

  • Mobility (long cane): you can use a mobility cane to preview the ground ahead of you, detect level changes and to create a free walking space around you.
  • Guide Dogs: Guide Dogs are the optimal aid for fast and fluid movement. They can help you travel through complex environments with confidence. Plus, they’re a dedicated companion with a unique personality matched to you and your lifestyle!
  • Support canes: you can use these for extra balance while you’re walking, and to help make you more visible during the dark or low light.
  • Identification canes: you can use these to let other people in the community know that you have low vision or blindness. This can be particularly useful in big crowds, on public transport, or in a busy city setting.

Electronic Mobility and Orientation Aids:

  • MiniGuides: this handheld device will detect objects in your path, like poles, trees, or benches. MiniGuides are best used together with a long cane or a Guide Dog.
  • StellarTrek GPS: this handheld device can speak the name of streets, intersections, and other important features in your environment. It’s perfect for driving in the taxi or on the bus, or walking, and—with the touch of a button—it can also tell you about shops or services in your nearby area.
  • iPhone GPS and smartphone apps: if you have a smartphone, there are many useful features and applications you can access on your phone such as travel apps (e.g., TripView or Opal travel). O&M Specialists can help you select one that supports you best and provide training to ensure you get the most out of it.

What funding can I use to receive Orientation and Mobility Services?

Guide Dogs is a registered NDIS provider and My Aged Care provider. This means many people can access Orientation and Mobility services through their NDIS plan or Home Care package. Find out more about funding programs and supports.

We understand that sometimes people who need services may not be eligible to receive government funding. If you have low vision or blindness and you do not have access to external funding, we will support you to achieve your goals using funding provided by generous donations from the community.

Get in touch for more details

To find further information about our Adult Mobility supports or begin receiving support from one of our Mobility Specialists, you can:

We welcome referrals and enquiries from individuals, families, health professionals and community organisations.

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