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Volunteers help blind, visually impaired increase mobility through sighted guides

"I'm excited to get better exercise and trust people more with me walking outside," said Lorraine Groeneveld, a visually impaired participant.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The Mary Free Bed YMCA partnered with the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired (ABVI) to host a clinic Tuesday to help blind and visually impaired people enjoy walks and runs with a sighted guide.

Fifteen participants will work with volunteers over the next three weeks to build trust and learn the techniques involved in exercising with guides.

For one Grand Rapids participant, the clinic is an opportunity to gain confidence in her mobility.

"I'm excited to get better exercise and trust people more with me walking outside," said Lorraine Groeneveld.

"Participating in an event like this where we can help more people have a love and a passion and an enjoyment about walking and running, I'm all for it," said ABVI volunteer Marcus Manders.

Both Mary Free Bed and ABVI have additional programs to help people of all abilities enjoy sports and other activities. 

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