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About Doing It Blind


At Doing It Blind, we break through the stereotypes and MisPerceptions of Blindness

Hello. My name is Jen Ferris. I am the industry journalist and the small business owner of Doing It Blind.

Photo Caption: Clipper, in his working Guide-Dog harness, is leading Jen down a street and they are preparing to cross a road.


Clipper, in his working Guide-dog harness, is leading Jen down a street and they are preparing to cross a road.

This is a photograph of me and my nine-year-old Guide-dog, clipper. You can read more about me and my personal story on the “Who Is Jen Ferris” page.

At Doing It Blind, we break through the stereotypes, misperceptions and sighted concepts of blindness and being blind.

I know you’re probably going through a whole lot of emotions, right now. I bet you’re quite overwhelmed with it all. Maybe you’re feeling like, at any moment, you’re going to crumble into a million pieces with all the responsibilities you now have in caring for this blind child. I bet you’re afraid of your child’s blindness. Maybe you’re anxious about whether or not you have what it takes to be the best kind of parent your blind or visually impaired child needs you to be. Maybe you’re worrying about your blind or visually impaired child not living out the dreams you planned out for him or her. I bet you’re fearing your blind or visually impaired child being helpless and dependent on you forever. Maybe you’re frustrated by having a blind or visually impaired child … “Why me?” you ask. “Why couldn’t it have been anybody else other than me!” You’re probably angry and saying “I don’t know anything about raising a blind or visually impaired child!” Maybe you’re feeling pity towards your blind or visually impaired child because of all the things he or she will miss out on or have to give up and pass by as a result of being blind. Maybe you’re at the point where you’ve accepted this new reality for what it is and now you’re looking for strategies and tips to get you and your child to the next stages. But the one thing I absolutely know for certain is you deeply and genuinely love this little being. And it is this love you feel for this tiny person which will move you from fear, doubt and anxiety to acceptance and providing all the basic necessities for an engaging, fulfilling, active, autonomous and independent life, well lived.

I started DoingItBlind.com because I believe in having high hopes and setting even higher expectations and performing to a higher standard for living a successful life as a blind individual.

As parents/guardians and educators, we can shape the outcome for a fulfilling and engaging life for our blind and visually impaired children. I believe eighty percent (80%) of our children’s success in life is determined by the attitudes, beliefs, concepts, notions, mindset and mental frameworks we, as adults, have of blindness. With a little hard work, perseverance, patience, testing of assumptions and a whole lot of love, we can provide blind and visually impaired children with a “no limits” and a “barrier-free” life. As adults, we can instill in blind and visually impaired children a growth mindset for a world of endless possibilities and an open road full of opportunities.

It’s important to understand blindness and varying degrees of visual impairment is not a restriction nor a constraint. It is not a limitation nor a burden. It is not a hindrance nor an impediment. Sure. Sometimes being blind or visually impaired is a nuisance. And with all the skills and abilities and competencies at early developmental stages, it doesn’t have to be any more than a simple nuisance. Most well integrated and successful blind adults and I share this belief of blindness. And it is this belief that propelled us to be highly contributing fully participating members of society.

Doing It Blind partners with you, parents and educators, to share in this belief, as well and create a no limits philosophy for yourself and your child or student.

The quality of lives our blind and visually impaired children lead now and as adults, is largely influenced and determined by:

  • Our teachings;
  • The skills we give them;
  • The words we instill in them;
  • The experiences we permit them to have;
  • The lessons we impart on them;
  • The concepts we bestow upon them;
  • The language we use to describe them and their strengths;
  • The opportunities we present to them;
  • The challenges we expose to them;
  • The potential we offer to them;
  • The ideas we allow them to explore;
  • Development of their imaginations, beliefs and desires to be more, want more and have more;
  • Development of their internal dialogues to prepare them for success;
  • Outfitting them with skills and abilities to gain mastery and achievement; and
  • The removal of mental blocks, personal barriers and physical obstacles.
At Doing It Blind we’ll help you to instill these attitudes, strengths and abilities in your children and students to ensure they are active and engaged in their communities. As our children go out and interact with the sighted world, one-by-one they will change the perceptions, biases and stereotypes of blind and visually impaired people. And through their demonstration of excellence, the world will know everything and anything is possible and come to adopt realistic perspectives of and for blind people in all areas of work and play.

Why Doing It Blind?

Doing It Blind was started to provide parents and educators with an online resource and community where you come to learn tips and strategies for raising and educating a blind or visually impaired child. Doing It Blind will guide, support, encourage and advise you through one-on-one consulting and in the online community. I will readily and freely serve you through videos, podcasts, webpages and blog posts because I believe raising and educating children is the responsibility of the community and we all need help and support. Another reason I started Doing It Blind was because parents/guardians and teachers told me:

  • “I’m thankful to have a resource and support to help me navigate through this life with a blind child.”
  • “I’m glad I found a blind role model of independence and success so that I can set reasonable expectations for and of my blind child.”
  • “We’re so blessed with an advisor and mentor to guide us along the journey of raising an independent active child who fully interacts with all the neighborhood children and classmates.”
  • “Believe it or not, … Jen showed me how a little neglect can benefit the independence of my son and enhance his journey and strengthen my love for him.”
  • “The private online community for parents and educators helped me to discuss issues, work through scenarios and implement techniques to integrate my blind child into all school and community activities.”
  • “Jen provides an avenue for me to conquer my own emotions of fear, anxiety, anger, panic, doubt and overwhelm which held my child back from living a fulfilled life and reaching her potential at every age and stage of development.”
  • “I love learning from members in the forum to test adaptive and assistive technologies and nontechnical aids to determine effectiveness, ease of use, functionality and practical applications in real world living.”
  • “I learned to stay calm and step back so that my little girl could have the space to problem solve and figure out the world for herself rather than me doing things for her. My sighted perspective is not always the best way for her.”
  • “I was glad to have Jen show me how to teach my child to crawl and walk and explore his environment through touch and sound.”
  • “Jen helped me to advocate for the best educational experience for my blind child in our public school system.”
  • “Jen helped me to realize the importance of touch to prepare my daughter for Braille reading.”
  • “I was so pleased with how quickly my daughter learned the skills I was teaching her to do for herself and how motivated she was to do things for herself. I learned to trust in and put faith in my daughter’s abilities and skills to perform daily living tasks and chores.”
  • “Through Jen’s guidance and support, and some insistence, I might add, I gained freedom and time for myself. And my boy has the freedom he deserves and needs to explore and navigate.”
  • “Since I partnered with Doing It Blind and Jen, I don’t have to worry and be nervous for my grandchild. I feel as though a large heavy weight has been taken off me”
  • “I was amazed to see how well my girl freely and quickly navigated around our backyard and side gardens after we set up subtle noise makers such as wind chimes, a radio, a water feature and bird feeders.”
  • “Everyday, I am reminded to put my blind student’s need for freedom and independence and autonomy ahead of my own personal need to help and facilitate. I am reminded to simply observe and watch the learning process of my student take place. If you’ll pardon the pun, Jen’s guidance and advice was such an eye-opener for me.”
  • “Jen taught me how to engage my toddler in physical active play. I cannot tell you how grateful I am to know that he is on a normal developmental track as other children his age.”
  • “Before I learned of Doing It Blind and Jen, I was so nervous. I was so afraid that my daughter would get hurt. I worried about her falling. I feared everything would be a potential danger to her. Now, I’m calmer and I am working on not reacting to my fears.”
  • “You know? Since I met Jen and started working with Doing It Blind, my husband and I have been working on keeping our girl’s future successes at the top of our thoughts and actions. I find myself asking: “how can I increase her autonomy,” and “if I do this for her, then, what does she learn from that?” It hasn’t been easy to watch her struggle, but we know she has to go through it. It’s been quite an adjustment, but we are putting our daughter’s learning and growing and development at the centre of everything we do and the way we think and how we act.”

Learning these truths and trusting in your child’s ability will help you to be the best parent/guardian and educator you can be for the success of your child. It is my hope and goal of Doing It Blind to serve you in the raising and educating of your blind child or student. The mission of Doing It Blind is to raise the employment rate among blind and visually impaired adults. At Doing It Blind, I believe the employability process begins in early childhood. So that’s why Doing It Blind works with parents and guardians and educators to ensure our blind and visually impaired children grow up with all the skills and capabilities and competencies to be gainfully and meaningfully employed.

Doing It Blind seeks to be your go-to resource and authority on being blind and raising and/or educating a blind or visually impaired child.

If you are a parent who has newly learned that your child has a visual impairment …

Or

Maybe you are an educator who has newly learned that you will be responsible for the education of a blind or visually impaired child.

… Then you have come to the right place.

At Doing It Blind, you, the parent or educator will:

  • have genuine pride in the competencies,capabilities and education of your blind or visually impaired child who is well integrated into the mainstream school, society, peers and community.
  • Be confident in your blind or visually impaired child’s practical skills and cognitive abilities to compete in the classrooms, university settings, job markets and employment situations to provide for themselves and their families.
  • Gain the admiration and respect from your friends for raising a high functioning and successful blind or visually impaired child or student
  • Have certainty and take comfort in your blind child’s willingness to be involved and accepted in all social situations with their neighborhood peer groups and classmates.
  • Contribute to a helping and supportive society by raising a capable and employable blind child in preparation for service to others in work, volunteer, entrepreneurship, community engagement and recreational pursuits.<
  • Experience personal fortitude, tenacity and integrity because you demonstrate strength, courage, confidence and curiosity in the raising of an active, self reliant, self sufficient, autonomous and engaged blind person.
  • Achieve tremendous significance by fulfilling a unique role in your family, community, neighbourhood and among your peers because you provided to the world, a role model of excellence and a visible demonstration of success as a blind person.
  • Reach out and connect with me and find mentors in other parents and educators in the online community who will support, help, guide and advise through any situation. Remember, you are not alone. You belong to a community of other parents and educators of blind and visually impaired children. You have mentors in other community members who are going through or have gone through similar situations and they are ready to share with you and eager to receive your experiences.
  • Challenged to rise to the occasion at every developmental stage to meet the needs and provide an independent and autonomous life for your blind or visually impaired child. By removing barriers and eliminating obstacles and lifting restrictions allows your blind and visually impaired child to freely grow and develop and learn. You will also learn, grow and discover greatness in yourself.

So, What’s In It For You?

At DoingItBlind.com, parents and educators of blind and visually impaired children will break through stereotypes and misperceptions to provide your children with a world of endless possibilities. You have the opportunity to work with me one-on-one, work together in group settings and ask each other in the online community for direction and guidance.

Tour the site and discover how DoingItBlind.com will work for you. Visit the parents/guardians and educators blog and read about other people’s experiences.

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As a token of gratitude for signing up to my email list, I would like to offer you a free twenty (20) minute consultation. During this time, you can ask me anything. Or talk to me about any issue. Or discuss any problem. I want you to get the feeling that I am here to serve you.

See you inside!