No shopping blind
PATRICKWalsh of Mt Perry, who has been vision-impaired for three and a half years, has received an ID Mate scanner from Gayndah Lions Club.
Gayndah Lions Club member Henry Harman said the $1395 scanner was a “wonderful piece of equipment” that would allow MrWalsh to “shop with confidence”.
MrWalsh, whose vision is now at 5%, said the portable talking barcode scanner gave users a text-to-speech description of more than two million items from its database.
“It’s absolutely great, fantastic that the Lions got me one I can use,” Mr Walsh said.
“It’s just like a fingerprint – I can scan the item and it tells me what it is.
“Everything I’ve got here it reads, but I shop at Aldi and need to download their barcodes.”
ID Mate users can also add voice-recorded information to existing products or create a label for anything that does not already have a barcode.
MrWalsh applied through Australian Lions Visual Independence Foundation for the scanner when his request for a seeing eye dog was declined.
“There’s not enough footpath in Mt Perry – only about 1km of footpath that we can use with a guide dog safely,” MrWalsh said.
“A bloke from Guide Dogs come up from Brisbane to see me.
“You’ve got to walk it (a seeing eye dog) 4km each day.”
MrWalsh said the ID scanner from Gayndah Lions Club was already making his life a little easier.
LIONS GIFT GIVES INSIGHT: Gayndah Lions president Peter Spencer (left) presents vision-impaired Mt Perry resident Patrick Walsh an ID scanner, with text to speech capability.