From October 2019, the Blind Foundation takes on a new name: Blind & Low Vision NZ. The name change marks the culmination of 18 months of considered research and engagement, as we seek to support increased relevance to those who could benefit from the services and support the organisation offers.
Blind & Low Vision NZ provides people who are blind or have low vision with the practical and emotional support to do the things they need and want to do, with self-reliance and confidence. As well as supporting individuals, the organisation seeks to make big-picture change by advocating for inclusive communities and for optimal eye care services for all New Zealanders.
John Mulka, Blind & Low Vision NZ Chief Executive, said that while the name Blind Foundation was widely known, many people did not know that the organisation’s services are relevant to people who have significant sight loss that can be described as low vision.
“By retaining the word ‘blind’ which is at the core of our identity, and including the term ‘low vision’, our new name better represents the diversity of sight loss that people experience. More importantly, we hope it helps people who are struggling with their vision when treatment is not an option, to understand that Blind & Low Vision NZ is a place they can connect with for practical and emotional support.”
Services available from Blind & Low Vision NZ support people with sight loss to learn personalised rehabilitation skills for living in their home, access information and connect with others using technology, techniques for getting around including guide dogs, employment support, counselling and connecting with others in the community. People use the services that support their goals for doing the things they want to in life.
Mulka explains that Blind & Low Vision NZ also takes an active role in advocating for inclusive communities as well as within the eye health sector to support optimal eye care services for all New Zealanders.
“Accessibility needs and eye health are areas that touch us all at some stage of life, and with an aging population linked with age-related sight loss, our services are in more demand than ever.
“Our name change is about telling people we can help, but it’s also just one way we are transforming to nurture the mana that the organisation’s 129 years of history stands on, and taking it into the future to strengthen our role in supporting people who are blind or have low vision in New Zealand.”
Although the public will begin to see the Blind & Low Vision NZ name in places, the organisation won’t be transitioning everything at once. For awhile, people may see references to both the Blind Foundation and Blind & Low Vision NZ. The legal name of Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind (RNZFB) remains.
To help people know who Blind & Low Vision NZ is, the logo will be supported with the text ‘formerly Blind Foundation’, where practically possible.
The website address will become blindlowvision.org.nz and email addresses will also change. Previous addresses will still work also.
Our new logo
The new logo for Blind & Low Vision NZ is bold and uncluttered. Three orange dots of varying sizes are to the left of the text. The words ‘blind’ and ‘low vision’ are of equal size, joined together by a plus sign. For the foreseeable future ‘formerly Blind Foundation’ will always appear with the new name.
The tagline of ‘Beyond Vision Loss’ remains, also written in Te Reo Māori.
About the design
The style of the new brand is designed to the standard of AAA accessibility. It incorporates clean fonts, strong colour contrast, clean backgrounds – all of which it is hoped will go unnoticed except in making it an easy and enjoyable experience. Orange is used as an accent colour, but not used to convey important information.
Design cues are taken from the Blind Foundation brand to retain some familiarity in the new brand. At the same time, there was committment to coming up with a design that is concurrently more accessible and engaging.