Daniel leading the blind

Daniel Kish will talk about his echo-location technique at an event this week.
Daniel Kish will talk about his echo-location technique at an event this week.

The 47-year-old, who has been totally blind since the loss of his second eye at 13 months of age, has used the technique of making clicking noises with his tongue to locate his surroundings to go hiking, camping and cycling, and teach others to enjoy the same simple freedoms sighted people take for granted.

Blind Citizens WA and World Access for the Blind Australia will host Mr Kish ” the founder of World Access for the Blind ” as guest speaker at a day-long seminar in Victoria Park on February 7.

Bringing his own perspective on blindness, he will demonstrate how skills such as echo-location can improve mobility for people who are blind or vision impaired.

According to his website, FlashSonar is a blind person’s developed perceptual ability to determine where and what things are around them, and how to effectively navigate and interact with these surroundings.

This is done by a person making a discrete, quiet tongue click, which allows the ear and brain to work together to construct a 3-D image from the reflected echoes of objects, much like how bats use sonar to ‘see’ to fly in the dark.

In the BBC interview, Mr Kish said it was all about gathering information in a strategic way.

‘The click varies in tone and volume, depending on the situation,’ he said.

‘People don’t usually hear me and I’ve rarely had any comments, even as a kid, and kids say things.

‘The most phobic about it are definitely Australians.’

Details

WHAT: Daniel Kish – Seeing with Sound Seminar
WHEN: Friday, February 7, 9am-4pm
WHERE: Theatrette, Association for the Blind of
WA, 61 Kitchener Avenue, Victoria Park
TICKETS: $40 ($20 Blind Citizens WA members) by
calling 9355 5113 or emailing bcwa@westnet.com.au
INFO: www.worldaccessfortheblind.org or
www.worldaccessfortheblindaustralia.org.au