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Like many people Rhonda was a bit unsure about learning to use new technology, but thanks to the right support her Amazon Echo Dot smart speaker has become invaluable.

Rhonda is one of many older Australians who are blind or have low vision who have been taken part in a Vision Australia program to learn how the Amazon devices can help them to be independent at home.

“I think when you’re older, technology is somewhat frightening,” Rhonda said.

“But the way in which they set up the program was phenomenal. It encouraged me to move forward and participate,” she said.

After her initial hesitation, Rhonda now uses her Echo Dot every day.

“I find it particularly useful,” she said.  

“I use it for reminders, for recipes, for some podcasts.”

Rhonda’s found it especially helpful in baking.

“I use it for the timer because I struggle to see the timer on the oven.”

Caption: Cooking is just one of the many everyday tasks that can be made more manageable with an Amazon device. 

The Echo Dot program is intended to introduce clients to the Amazon Echo.

Within the program, participants receive a free Amazon Echo Dot speaker, free installation, virtual lessons once a week for 12 weeks, and personalised support from a Vision Australia assistive technology specialist.

The purpose of the Echo Dot program is to assist clients with maintaining their independence.

The device  assists clients with daily tasks, allows them to remain connected to their communities, and provides them with immediate access to information.

The Echo Dot program is funded by the Commonwealth Home Support program.

If you are interested in participating in the program, call Vision Australia on 1300 84 74 66, or send an email to [email protected].