For the past few months, Anita has been working as a receptionist at SeeAbility’s head office. She has a visual impairment and SeeAbility has worked with her to overcome any barriers to carrying out her work.

We caught up with Anita to see what a typical day was like!


8.30 am

When I first arrive in the morning, I like to take a note of my schedule and what rooms are being used during the day. For this, I have been provided with a Dictaphone – a small electronic voice recorder. It allows me to record voice notes and listen back to them whenever I need to throughout the day.


9 am

I’m starting to get phone calls through now. Important information I need throughout the day - such as phone extension numbers - are all stored on spreadsheets on my computer. The computer has been specially modified so I am able to use it easily, with a large-letter keyboard, and more importantly, SuperNova software. SuperNova allows me to increase the magnification of everything on the screen, so I don’t struggle with using the computer.

Anita pictured answering the phone


10.30 am

Around mid-morning, the post arrives. It’s my job to sort all the letters and parcels and then deliver them to the right people around the office. Obviously, with a visual impairment, it’s difficult for me to read all the labels, so I use a scanner. The scanner takes a picture of the text and then reads it out to me through headphones. This makes the job much easier!

When I first joined SeeAbility, I spent some time with a lovely vision rehabilitation worker called Deanne. She helped me to know where everything was, including the layout of the office and where everyone sits. I've memorised where everyone sits so I am able to give each colleague their post. And every person keeps their belongings tucked away so I don’t trip over.


12.30 pm:

It’s lunchtime and I make use of the kitchen facilities to warm up my lunch and make myself a drink. Communal kitchens can often be problematic for visually impaired people, as appliances, crockery and tea supplies are often moved around throughout the day. To help with this, SeeAbility staff ensure everything is put back in the same place so I don’t spend half my lunch hour looking for the things I need!


2:30 pm:

An important part of my job is franking the post, which I usually do in the afternoon. Unfortunately, not all machines can easily be adapted for visually impaired people, and the franking machine is one of these! With plenty of training from SeeAbility staff, however, I was able to figure out exactly how to work the franking machine and now it’s much easier.


5 pm:

It’s home time. It really feels like every barrier to working in an office has been removed. SeeAbility has supported me in every way they can, so I now feel that I can carry out my role to the best of my ability and as independently as possible. The job has boosted my confidence and made me feel like I can achieve everything I want to!


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