At its June meeting, and based on feedback, the Board decided that Blind Citizens NZ’s 2023-2026 Strategic Plan would be an updated version of the current Strategic Plan. The Board encourages feedback on the 2023-2026 Draft Plan below. If the Board receives feedback from individual members, Branches, and | or Networks who feel that the proposed Strategic Plan cannot be supported without significant alteration, then the Board will bring the draft to this year’s AGM and Conference for discussion. However, if feedback from everyone is consistently supportive, the Board will adopt the Strategic Plan 2023-2026 at its August 2023 meeting. It will bring the Plan to AGM and Conference for information.

Amendments to the Strategic Plan include tweaks to make sure plain language is used. Other changes include:

  • ‘Vision’ statement: amended to recognise the importance of people having ‘choice, control, and equity’.
  • ‘Values’ statement: makes it clear that all points are valued with ‘equal importance’.
  • Goal 1: In the bullet point for this Goal, the importance of Te Tiriti o Waitangi principles in Blind Citizens NZ’s advocacy is recognised.
  • Goal 3: first bullet point amended to include leadership, and self-determination.
  • Goal 4: the words ‘approach everyday life with’ are replaced with ‘to have’.
  • Goals 5, 6 and 7: some bullet points have been shortened.

A full summary of amendments that includes word changes etc., can be requested from the National Office. Feedback including support for the draft, or suggested amendments should be received by the Chief Executive Rose Wilkinson no later than 4pm, Monday 31 July 2023 to any of the following:

Post: Blind Citizens NZ, PO Box 7144, Newtown, Wellington 6242;

Fax: 04-389-0030; Email:

Draft 2023-2026 Strategic Plan

Purpose: Blind Citizens NZ exists to give voice to the aspirations and lived experiences of blind, deafblind, low vision, and vision-impaired people living in New Zealand.

Vision: Every blind, deafblind, low vision, and vision-impaired person has choice and control over their life and therefore equity with all other New Zealanders.

Note: In the context of this document, the word “blind” includes all those people who are blind, deafblind, low vision, or vision-impaired, or who use any other blindness term that describes them, who can identify with our goals.

Values: We value with equal importance:

  • respect for the different ways each of us responds to the challenges of blindness;
  • the shared learning and support received from the lived experiences of others;
  • commitment to democratic principles that ensure our representations are broadly based;
  • commitment to sustained effort in our advocacy;
  • constructive, cooperative and mutually supportive relationships with other disability organisations;
  • the principles of Te Tiriti O Waitangi (Treaty of Waitangi);
  • the principles and opportunities of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the New Zealand Disability Strategy;
  • our history and the role we have played in the lives of blind people since 1945.

Goal 1: Blind people live in an accessible, equitable and inclusive society.

  • We will advocate on the grounds of human rights and equity using the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi to those who create barriers to our full participation in society.

Goal 2: The community’s response to blindness is demonstrated by positive actions and attitudes.

  • We will always portray blind people positively.
  • We will create greater community awareness that blind people can and do fully participate in society; (amended)

Goal 3: Blind people advocate at both a personal and societal level.

  • We will provide and support leadership opportunities and advocacy training to promote the self-determination of blind people;
  • We will demonstrate through collective action, how blind people can improve their life, and the lives of others.

Goal 4: Blind people receive the services they need to have independence, confidence and dignity in their everyday lives.

  • We will assess blindness and disability services to ensure they are meeting the needs and expectations of blind people;
  • We will advocate for a better experience for blind people using publicly available services;
  • We will advocate for improvement in both quantity and quality of service where there is evidence of unmet need.

Goal 5: Blind Citizens NZ is recognised for its leadership in the blind community, and as a leading Disabled People’s Organisation.

  • We will work with Government and our disability sector partners to promote changes that benefit blind and other disabled people.
  • We will actively support like-minded international organisations that advance the cause of blind people throughout the world including the World Blind Union.

Goal 6: Blind Citizens NZ is a responsive organisation that encourages people to belong.

  • We will maintain a consistent flow of information to the blind community, and seek every opportunity to engage with them about the impact of blindness on their lives;
  • We will promote and provide a safe and welcoming environment within our branches and networks for social interaction, peer support and sharing information.

Goal 7: Blind Citizens NZ is recognised for what it adds to the blind community and society.

  • We will actively promote the benefits of joining our organisation, and seek new ways to attract more members;
  • We will demonstrate that we are a dynamic and constructive Disabled People’s Organisation worthy of everyone’s support.