The Guild for the Blind believes that children and adults who are blind or visually impaired have the right to receive respect and attain independence at home, in the workplace, and in the community. They have a variety of services that help blind and visually impaired individuals reach personal goals and improve their lives.
The Guild's adult rehabilitation services include a program geared towards seniors experiencing new vision loss called New Visions. This program promotes independence within the home and community by providing participants with the information, techniques, and tools they need to successfully adjust to their new lives with impaired sight. Two workshop series are available to beginners or to those ready for more advanced topics.
A staff training program designed to teach long-term care facility personnel how to more effectively interact and assist those with vision impairments is available throughout the Chicago metropolitan area. Dealing with the issues of safety, communication, and independence -- as well as information regarding low vision techniques, services and products -- is shared in a supportive environment to facilitate better communication, understanding, and outcomes for those they serve.
The Guild's Judi Jasek Low Vision Lab is open to anyone wishing to learn more about assistive devices such as hand-held magnifiers and closed-circuit televisions. All products are available for the general public to have a hands-on demonstration of what is available before deciding on a purchase. Individual assistance is offered to ensure that the devices are used properly and are the best to suit personal needs.
Computer training is offered through small group classes, individual instruction, or through the Darlene Schwartz Tutorial Training Program for those who wish to learn at their own pace. Classes range from introductory instruction for those new to adaptive technology (such as JAWS or ZoomText) to more specific topics such as Microsoft Word or the Internet.
Employment Connection is the Guild's career readiness program that provides participants with the knowledge, tools, and self-confidence they need to compete in today's market place for the career of their choice. Individualized programs are supplemented with group workshops, work project opportunities to develop business skills, and career counseling to address issues specific to each participant.
The Guild provides information pertaining to a myriad of issues facing the blind and visually impaired community. Their database and "Guild Briefs" newsletter are continuously updated with resources for those who have vision loss, those that support them, and the professionals in the field of vision loss who serve them.
Guild for the Blind
180 N. Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60601-7463