FT. LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A group of visually impaired adults at Lighthouse of Broward County has discovered it’s fun to work out their other senses.
Bill Kociaba, who we met through our “Moving You” campaign, volunteers his time every Tuesday to teach the fitness class at the Lighthouse Center for the visually impaired.
“In a way, it’s kind of a therapy for me too because of the nature of my vision issue. I lived in the sighted world my whole life, so all of a sudden when it got dark it was kind of ‘oh wow, this is, I don’t know how to deal with this’,” he said.
Kociaba said at first teaching the class was difficult, but he continued because of the positive impact it had on those who participated.
The hour-long class provides those that have lost or are losing their sight with some sense of normalcy which helps them cope with everyday life.
“Being here has really helped. I can still use a computer, I can still cook, I can still exercise. There are so many options that are still open for us out there, it’s just having the open mind and willingness to look for it and finding it,” said Felicia Albu.
It’s clear that this class provides a sense of community for a group of people going through a similar struggle. That’s something Albu appreciates.
“It does show us that we can still be a part of being active, maybe not at the same level, but there’s still a level of activities and it’s finding ourselves again but in a different way,” she said.
Gladys Colon, who’s in her 90’s, considers the center, and the class, a second home.
“When I found the Lighthouse, thank God, this is my place, this is my place, I’m very proud,” she said.
Colon lost almost all her sight due to glaucoma. But she found the ability to stay mentally tough and see the joy in life in her own way.
“I never thought I would be blind. And I’m getting blind and every day is worse and worse,” she said. “I never cried and I will not cry, never a drop. Take it the way it is and do whatever you can and forget about your condition.”
Anyone interested in joining the fitness class, or knows someone who would be interested, can contact the Lighthouse of Broward County. They also offer assisted transportation for those that are visually impaired.
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