Teens + tweens:
Thanh is a high achieving high school student, and rises to each new mobility challenge.
Thanh received a scholarship to a private school in Melbourne’s east in 2015, and travelled to school via car from West Footscray each morning with her mum or sister. Earlier this year, Thanh decided she wanted to catch the tram home, like her friends – increasing her independence and freedom.
Thanh has Sclerocornea, which means she overcomes unique mobility challenges to achieve independence. Thanh worked alongside a GDV Mobility specialist to meet her goal of travelling home by tram.
“We worked on apps to assist Thanh so she knows when it is her stop to get off, and on self-advocacy skills to deal with the public on the trams,” says her Orientation and Mobility therapist.
With the help of her Orientation and Mobility specialist, Thanh is currently learning how to navigate new areas of her school for the upcoming school year, as well as preparing for her school’s city experience. The role of her specialist will be to provide basic understanding of the CBD for her week in the city. They are working together to fill the gaps in her knowledge by providing tactile maps of the road layout and public transport systems she will be using with her class.
Thanh now catches the tram home every day, providing her with the independence she was seeking. It’s made such a difference, that sometimes she goes out with her mates to the local shops for something to eat first! She is looking forward to continuing her journey towards greater mobility, and is hoping to learn how to catch transport to school in the near future.