The Story and Evolution of Cane and Compass
Originally launched in 2015, Ashley created Cane and Compass while completing her Master’s in Orientation and Mobility at California State University Los Angeles. She realized there was a shortage of resources for creative orientation and mobility instruction, and was inspired to create a resource to aid specialists to teach clients/students concepts in fun, motivating, creative ways.
After marrying Scott, Ashley’s vision for Cane and Compass evolved to sharing about their life. Scott is legally blind due to right homonymous hemianopsia that was caused by a traumatic brain injury while serving in Iraq, and Ashley has been inspired to share what it’s like to switch from being an Orientation and Mobility instructor to being married to someone with a visual impairment.
Our three main hopes for Cane and Compass are:
First, that those of you who used this site as a resource before, will continue to follow and learn with Ashley as she navigates this new role.
Second, that we can share family adventures and our thankfulness for Scott and those who serve or have served in our military.
Third, that we can use this blog to recognize some of the amazing people and groups that provide rehabilitation and opportunities for Veterans and disabled athletes.
Ashley is a graduate of the CSULA Orientation and Mobility program with experience providing blind and low vision rehabilitation to children and young adults age 5-22, and adults up to 100-years-old.
In addition to the blog, in 2017 she designed the original “It’s Just A Cane” tee and launched the social media hashtag #itsjustacane.
She worked for two years as an itinerant O&M around the Bay Area and one year at the Western Blind Rehabilitation Center where she eventually met Scott.
She is currently taking a break from working as an O&M and filling the role as a full time caregiver for Scott and step-mom to his daughter Aly.
Scott is a retired Army Cavalry Scout and was awarded a Purple Heart after surviving a bullet to the left side of his head while serving in Iraq.
Scott joined the Army immediately after graduating high school and served for four years before being injured. He was part of the 1st Squadron, 14th U.S. Cavalry Squadran whose 2nd infantry division worked with the very first Stryker combat vehicles.
After his injury he received rehabilitation services to relearn how to walk and talk again, and underwent surgeries to his skull. He is legally blind in the right visual field of each eye, cannot feel the right side of his body, hearing impaired on the left side, and has aphasia. The .762 bullet is still in his head.
Scotts motivation comes from his daughter Aly, his wife, and his dream of having a big family.
Cane and Compass Accomplishments
Exhibitor at 2018 Northern California Braille Challenge View More Here
California Association of Orientation and Mobility Specialists (CAOMS):
- ACVREP approved presenter for Southern CAOMS 1st Virtual Meeting Feb. 2018: Utilizing Social Media and the Internet to Address Stigmas about Visual Impairments and Bring Professionals Together
- Article “O&M Guide to Utilizing Ride-Sharing Services” featured in the Statewide Winter Newsletter
- Exhibitor at the 2017 Conference View Conference Highlights Here
Featured on Canadian audio broadcast The Pulse hosted by Accessible Media Inc. (AMI): Listen Here
Featured on Blind New World: Read Guest Post Here
Listed #1 for “Creative Ideas and Resources” for Cal State University Los Angeles Orientation and Mobility Graduate Students
2500+ engagements on Pinterest
Listed as a Resource
–CAOMS website Visit Resource Page Here
-Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI) website View Resource Page Here
-Perkins Scout Database Visit Resource Page Here