Community outreach is a subject that is actually one of the four primary areas RSA asked the OIB TAC to address in technical assistance and training. Many states list community outreach as a major challenge and an area that they feel they need help with on the annual 7ob form.
Rural areas present a distinct challenge to providing services to individuals who are visually impaired and blind, and especially to those who are older.
I have had the experience of working in an urban area and in a very rural area. The barriers to individuals with visual impairmetns in rural areas seem to far exceed those of individuals living in urban areas.
Some states provide Independent Living services to individuals who are under 55 years old. If anyone would like to share, We would like find out what types of services that are provided to this demographic and what resource stream does the state use to fund these services?
In my area, Southeastern Washington State, the state has cut back the funding for the independent older blind program which I find disturbing. I have only allowed to work with clients for three visits which is not enough to teach them the new technologies available to them.
I would like to thank everyone that attended the OIB-TAC Presentations and our Booth at the AER Conference in Reno, NV last week.
If you attended, the OIB-TAC would love to know what your favoriate parts of the conference were.
We are excited to announce that we are again combining the annual OIB Program Managers' Meeting with the AFB Leadership Conference. The Conference will be in Oakland, CA on April 5-7, 2018. The Program Managers' Meeting will be held on Thursday, April 5th.
There has been some discussion about how older blind programs often do not attract males in numbers that reflect the percentage of the older population. Some may be served by Veteran’s Affairs, but there is some concern that programs traditionally may focus more on housekeeping tasks and less on areas of interest to older men.