Kitchen safety is always on our mind, and we’d love to congratulate the Braille Institute for reintroducing their Kitchen Confidence Program, which offers free cooking, nutrition, and safety classes for the blind and visually impaired. The program is supported by the Elaine F. Stepanek Foundation, and is taught by full-time, home management instructors who also help develop curriculum to support healthy eating on a budget and healthy habits to monitor cholesterol and sugar levels, as these conditions have been shown to affect eye health.
The Kitchen Confidence Program inspires blind and vision-impaired adults to be more self-sufficient and responsible with their health, and also allows them to consider the kitchen a safe and manageable place.
Here are some of the fantastic features the program offers:
• Integrates mobile and assistive technology with common kitchen appliances and utensils. Technology such as mobile tablet workstations replay audio instructions and enlarge text as needed, to aid people with low vision.
• Uses a specially created teaching kitchen with stations for gas and electric stove tops, ovens, microwaves, and other small appliances.
• Is included as part of the Braille Institute’s core set of free classes (Other example offerings are classes in living skills and getting around town).
• Teaches low vision adults to create nutritious meals, grocery shop, safely use knives and kitchen appliances, organize and manage a kitchen, and avoid and handle injuries.
Eventually, the Braille Institute hopes to expand their program to include virtual classrooms, thereby enabling them to reach larger numbers of blind and vision-impaired adults, and empower them to feel safe and confident in the kitchen. Take a look at the Institute’s website to see what else they’re up to, and always remember to practice safe cooking habits in your own home too! For more information, contact Michael Lazarovits, Executive Director of Braille Institute Santa Barbara at 805-682-6222.