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St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired Teams with Lighthouse

  • Synopsis: Published: 2010-09-13 (Revised/Updated 2016-11-06) - St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired and Lighthouse for the Blind-St. Louis have joined forces to implement program to increase low vision in-home services to individuals and families. For further information pertaining to this article contact: St. Louis Society for the Blind.

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St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired Teams with Lighthouse for the Blind to Boost Low Vision In-Home Services for Individuals and Families - Expanded Client Service Program Increases In-Home Follow Ups, Assessments and Referrals.

The St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Lighthouse for the Blind-St. Louis have joined forces to implement a program to increase low vision in-home services to individuals and families in the greater St. Louis region.

Society President David Ekin, ACSW, LCSW, says, "This is a productive example of community non-profit organizations collaborating to share resources to expand low-vision services without duplication or redundancy to better serve the needs of visually impaired people in our region.

"It enables the Society to conduct additional low-vision assessments of our current and new clients, and to increase our low vision rehabilitation in-home follow-up services," Ekin said.

The two service agencies have pooled funds enabling the Society to hire a new occupational therapist, Jennifer West, who provides initial low vision assessments and identifies individuals who might benefit from additional in-home training in the use of low vision aids received through the Society's Low Vision Clinic. The in-home component also provides assessments to identify other Vision Rehabilitation needs and make appropriate service referrals to Society therapists.

"This program serves clients who visit a physician or ophthalmologist and, afterward, may need support or low vision rehabilitation training within the home," Ekin said. "It expands our Low Vision and Vision Rehabilitation programs currently managed by the Society by enabling us to increase and extend our services.

"We are very grateful for the support and encouragement from Lighthouse for the Blind-St. Louis, which is helping to make this program successful for the clients involved."

Lighthouse for the Blind-St. Louis' mission is to help individuals who are legally blind maintain dignity and independence by making available employment, education and support services. Originally founded in 1933 as the Industrial Aid for the Blind, Lighthouse for the Blind-St. Louis is a privately chartered, 501(c)3 non-profit corporation. Its major source of income is through sales of products manufactured and sold to government agencies and commercial consumers. A member agency of the National Industries for the Blind that participates in the Ability One Program, it currently has two manufacturing plants in greater St. Louis where approximately 90 percent of the labor force is legally blind. For more information, visit the website www.lhbindustries.com/contact.htm.

The Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired enhances independence, empowers individuals and enriches the lives of people who are blind or visually impaired including children, adults, and their families. Its caring, qualified staff provides specialized vision rehabilitation, adaptive education, assistive technology and support services.

The Society serves an increasing number of older adults who are newly visually impaired or blind due to age-related eye conditions with home-based services, specialized agency services and community activities. It also renders services to school-age students at school districts in Illinois and Missouri. It is the only agency of its kind serving greater St. Louis, and the second oldest of its kind west of the Mississippi River.

For more information about Society programs, activities and sponsorship opportunities, please visit the Society website at slsbvi.org/ or call David Ekin at 314.968.9000. Media relations contact: Jeff Dunlap at 314.993.6925.



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