Sensity is grateful to the Brant Community Foundation for its continued support of our programming. In December we learned we would receive a grant for $5,400.
The funding will be used to purchase a 3D printer and supply of filament for the Resource Centre in Paris.
The sense of touch is the main gateway for communication for individuals who are deafblind. The technology of 3D printing would allow individuals who are deafblind to produce customized, tactile-based, low-cost tangible objects and devices that could improve their ability to connect with the world around them. In short, choosing and designing an object and having it ‘come to life’ in front of would be a stimulating, tactile experience.
We believe 3D printing holds great potential in the creation of tactile maps and tactile experience books.
Tactile maps are a valuable aid for people who are blind or partially sighted, helping them to orient themselves and to plan routes. For example, a tactile map could help individuals orient themselves to a new house or apartment, the Sensity Resource Centre for new people in our services, or events such as a recreation or music venue prior to attending.
Experience books incorporate objects or artifacts from an activity or event in which the person has participated to create a book recording and telling about the event. Individuals we support use experience books to help with reflection, conversation and socialization, language development, reinforcing concepts or experiences, anticipation and enjoyment.
Sensity’s application was encouraged by Dr. Atul Jaiswal, a researcher in vision science at the University of Montreal’s School of Optometry, who is involved in studies of additive manufacturing (also known as 3D printing) as a rehabilitation tool to assist individuals who are deafblind or with vision impairment. Dr. Jaiswal is supportive of our efforts to incorporate 3D printing into our programming, terming it an “excellent idea.”
Brant Community Foundation grants encourage community pride, support initiatives that strengthen our community and develop special opportunities that address changing needs.
This is the third consecutive year Sensity has been successful in its grant application to the Brant Community Foundation. Last year, we received $5,00 to purchase multi-sensory exercise and activity equipment.