Technology develops very quickly nowadays, and creators always keep up with its fast-paced development and even the sky doesn’t seem to be the limit because they can literally create anything. This development did not leave behind the human aspect and it pushed people to think about the blind people and how difficult their lives are and for that reason, a new way of volunteering came to life through an app called “BE MY EYES”. This app allows normal and healthy people literally be the eyes of blind people.
It was launched in 2015 with one goal in mind, to make sure that blind people get help from healthy persons and it performed very well because it reaped more than 2 million volunteers that are willing to help those in need and over 130 thousand visually impaired persons have signed up.
This app is very simple, the visually impaired person video calls and a sighted volunteer will answer to help them in every way possible. And, as expected, both the volunteers and the visually impaired loved this app and started sharing it.
Over 136 thousand visually impaired people use this app seeking help. They usually ask for help to find a dropped item, read labels on products in the grocery store, reading charts, expiration dates, etc.
The only disadvantage of this app is the outstanding number of volunteers. This may cause confusion but let me explain; There are more volunteers in this app than visually impaired people, that means that not all volunteers get to help someone. The visually impaired people can call and receive an answer in a matter of seconds, but volunteers, unfortunately, won’t have the chance to always offer help.
This app was the idea of Mr. Wiberg, he thought of it after a blind friend of his said that he uses video calls with family and friends for assistance. After that, he thought of the app and he presented it to a Danish startup event and BE MY EYES came to life.
The founder of this app stated: “It’s my hope that by helping each other as an online community, Be My Eyes will make a big difference in the everyday lives of blind people all over the world,”. The app got 10000 users within the first of launch and now it is one of the biggest volunteer networks for visually impaired people.
BE MY EYES website says that these are the most common tasks that the visually impaired ask volunteers to do:
Finding lost or dropped items
Pictures, paintings, and artwork description
Matching or explaining colors for outfits
Reading labels on products and expiration dates
Reading what’s written on computer screens
Shopping in supermarkets
Familiarizing with new places
Identifying food items
Knowing the departure and arrival of buses, trains, planes, etc