About Us

Our Aims

To maximise the personal resources and ability of people in the ACT and local region whose lives are affected by blindness or low vision, by responding to their needs through care, communication and support.

Our Past

In a lounge room at Deakin in the 1950’s, a small number of dedicated people gathered together, committing themselves to assist people in Canberra who experienced blindness or vision impairment. So began the grassroots organisation known today as the Canberra Blind Society (CBS).

Our Present

While the small group in the 1950’s provided assistance to only four people who were blind, today from our busy offices in the Griffin Centre, in cooperation with other blindness agencies and community groups, CBS provides an extensive range of services and facilities to large number of clients.

As a community and peer support group for people who are blind or vision impaired in the ACT, CBS are proud to offer the Canberra community our longstanding initiatives such as:

  • Arts and Crafts Group – a time to engage in learning new arts and craft technics
  • Sense-able Cooking – designed to help people whose vision is failing to prepare meals with confidence
  • Friends of Braille  – peer support sessions for people who are blind or vision impaired to share their interest in the Unified English Braille Code.
  • Audio Book Group – a book lovers delight to explore a diverse range of books and discuss these with fellow readers.
  • Birrigai ‘Come and Try’ Weekend: an annual recreation weekend camp at Birrigai Outdoor School.

Our Future

We are, now more than ever, inventing new ways of engaging with our valued members. Canberra Blind Society will continue to build our already trusted rapport with the wider ACT community through key campaigns including our Eyes For Life Canberra Initiative as well as Overview, our Adaptive Technology Expo. Sustainable funding is always a major issue but volunteers are the lifeblood of our organisation. Join with us, connect with us, as together we embrace the next 65 plus years of community service. 

Screen Shot 2023 07 12 at 10.09.16 am

Glenn Doney

Debra Staff Photo scaled.jpg

Debra Quinell

Outreach Officer (4)

Dr Claire Manning

Project Officer for Mentoring Program

Hayley smiling at camera

Hayley Moeller

Administration & Volunteer Coordinator

Outreach Officer (4)

Stefanie Berta-McGhie

BAS Agent / Bookkeeper

Alex Staff Photo scaled.jpg

Alexandra Parnell

Creative Marketing Officer

Outreach Officer (4)

Bianca David

Social Media Coordinator

Our Mission

To assist vision impaired people in the ACT and region to lead full lives

Our Objectives

Our objectives are to:

  • Provide or assist to provide sustainably funded, inclusive facilities and services for people who are vision impaired or blind in the ACT and region.
  • Ensure appropriate information, products and resources are available in person and online.
  • Educate the broader community on vision impairment, accessibility and inclusion for people who are vision impaired or blind.
  • Provide support and education to people of all ages who are losing their sight – helping them to navigate the resources, support and available programs.
  • Partner with other foundations, organisations or government bodies that support us in achieving our mission.
  • Build a strong membership base of supporters who come together for connection, information and support.
  • Create an environment where everyone feels welcome, included and supported. 
  • Actively seek the participation of people who are vision impaired or blind in the operation and management of the organisation.
  • Support national and international activities that reflect the express needs of people who are vision impaired or blind.

Our Community

We are here to:

  • Support more than 35,000 people in the ACT and region who are vision impaired or blind, their family and friends.
  • Engage our members who are active participants in our organisation.
  • Cultivate our staff and volunteers who provide high quality services and support.

Our Values

We provide a localised service offering, which is inclusive and personalised. We are here to create a sense of belonging amongst a community of Canberrans who are vision impaired or blind, their families and supporters.

Our Goals

Engage and Educate our community

  • Continuously seek to build awareness of our organisation and the needs of vision impaired people in Canberra.

Actively engage more clients

  • Expand our reach across the Canberra vision impaired community by demonstrating our value and service offering.

Foster a community of belonging 

  • Our services and approach to delivery aims to create a community of people and a sense of belonging.

Build a culture of feedback and improvement 

  • We actively seek a two-way exchange of feedback and ideas internally and externally to improve our organisation and services.

Create a sustainable business model 

  • We have an efficient and effective business model which allows us to deliver services aligned with our mission which are appropriately funded over the long term.


Download PDF version here 

12 July 2023

Board Members (Vacancies)

Download document here

Applications are sought from appropriately experienced people with a vision impairment for one (1) Vice President vacancy and one (1) General Member vacancy on the Board of Canberra Blind Society (CBS) in a volunteer capacity.

Apply your skills and experience by leading an organisation dedicated to delivering services that improve the independent lives and health of people who are blind or vision impaired.

Join a not-for-profit charity, which support what matters for people who are blind or vision impaired.

At Canberra Blind Society we’re inspired by our aim to maximise the personal resources and abilities of people in the ACT and Canberra region whose lives are affected by blindness or low vision, by responding to their needs through care, communication, and support. As a CBS Board Member, you will have an excellent understanding of and demonstrable skills in contemporary governance in the context of commercial or not-for-profit charity, preferably within health and community services, and will be able to lead organisational growth whilst maintaining high quality, safe and equitable services. Skill sets in fund raising, Board Governance and Legal are highly desirable.

Applicants will need to demonstrate a strong, genuine alignment with the CBS Vision, Purpose, Guiding Principles and Values.

Closing date for applications is 11.59pm Friday 11 August. Interviews will be conducted in early September with the outcome to be announced in late September 2023.

To apply, email your curriculum vitae to the Executive Officer


For more information about the Canberra Blind Society, please contact us on (02) 6247 4580.

Skip to content