What is Orientation and Mobility?

Orientation and Mobility is specialized training provided by Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) to individuals who are blind or visually impaired on specific strategies and skills for safe, efficient, and effective travel in both indoor and outdoor environments. Some of the skills that are taught include:

  • Searching skills: locating items or places efficiently
  • Sighted guide: using another person to aid in travel
  • Protective techniques: specific skills which provide added protection in unfamiliar areas
  • Use of public transportation
  • Long cane skills: use of various cane techniques to clear one’s path or to locate objects along the way

Who is eligible?

  • Adults in the metro Boston area who are served by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) and who are blind or visually impaired.
  • Adults who are blind or visually impaired who qualify for the Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) waiver or the Money Follows the Person (MFP) Demonstration Waiver.
  • Adults with low vision in the Greater Boston and Metro West areas (please enquire for a list of towns, as service areas vary from time to time).

What do Orientation and Mobility Services include?

  • Direct services
    • A variety of assessments (travel, low vision, environmental) are provided to establish a recommendation for additional Orientation and Mobility services and training.
    • Person-specific Orientation and Mobility lessons that teach the specific skills and strategies necessary for safe, efficient, and effective travel.
  • Consultative services
    • Trainings for the support network in understanding the needs of the individuals with vision loss. Training and consultation are provided for both person-specific and general issues.
  • Education and Advocacy
    • How to access community resources and vision-related assistive technology
    • Eye care information
    • Will attend eye exams
    • Will attend Individual Service Plan meetings

    Where are Orientation and Mobility services provided?

    • Home
    • Work
    • Day program
    • Vocational program
    • Community
    • Public transportation

    How do I request Orientation and Mobility services?

    • Individuals served by DDS must be referred for services by their service coordinator.
    • Individuals participating in the ABI or MFP waivers must make enquiries with their case manager or service coordinator.
    • Adults with low vision may contact our office on 888-613-2777, email mabvi@mabcommunity.org or complete our service referral form to enquire about rates.