Latest Update(s) To This Website November 2019:
SVCB Local Activities
New Resource Links:
· Medicine Management (courtesy of Singlecare.com)
· Employment (courtesy of Fiscaltiger.com)
Silicon Valley Council of the Blind
"Access to Life"
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 493, Mountain View, CA 940420493
Phone: 888-652-5333 (leave a message)
Website URL: www.svcb.cc
The Silicon Valley Council of the Blind (SVCB) is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization under the California Council of the Blind. We are a membership organization of persons who are blind or visually impaired, our families and friends. Our goal is to improve the quality of life for all persons with vision loss through advocacy and mutual support. We are organized as a chapter of the California Council of the Blind, which is a state affiliate of the American Council of the Blind, and draw our membership largely from Santa Clara County.
The Silicon Valley Council of the Blind (SVCB) is a membership organization of persons who are blind or visually impaired, and our families and friends. Our goal is to improve the quality of life for all persons with vision loss through advocacy and mutual support. We are organized as a chapter of the California Council of the Blind, which is a state affiliate of the American Council of the Blind, and draw our membership largely from Santa Clara County. To accomplish our mission, we have undertaken the following activities:
· Educate both the public and ourselves about the capabilities and responsibilities as well as the special needs of persons who are blind or visually impaired.
· Work jointly with other organizations who share our goals.
Since our founding in 1987 both our size and the scope of our efforts have increased substantially:
· Regular monthly meetings are held where persons with vision loss can learn about and discuss issues of concern to them with public officials, professionals in the field of blindness and other blind persons.
· Through our annual Barbara Rhodes Adaptive Technology Grant, we offer up to $1500 to a blind or visually-impaired person who can best demonstrate the need for adaptive technology that will improve his/her quality of life of advance her/his educational and/or employment opportunities. To access the current grant application, see www.svcb.cc or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
· A newsletter is published monthly featuring items of current local interest provided in large print, braille, E-mail, and cassette tape.
· Our web site has links to resources and contact information.
· We continually educate ourselves about legislation and government regulations related to blindness, while actively trying to improve them through testimony and negotiation. For example, we are continuously engaged in efforts to maintain and improve the quality of public transportation, which is so vital to the independence of our members.
· SVCB sponsors social and recreational activities where persons who share our goals can get to know one-another and experience the solidarity which helps us all to "keep up the good work".
Participation in SVCB is extended to all persons who share our desire to improve the quality of life of persons with vision loss. Suggestions, donations and volunteers to support our work are welcome.
SVCB Organization Links
Toll-Free in California: 800-221-6359
Outside California: 916-441-2100
Starting with February 16th, 2019 meeting, SVCB meetings are held at the Vista Center San Jose Office, 101 N. Bascom Avenue, San Jose, CA 95128, 1-408-295-4016, every third Saturday from 9:30 AM. to 1 PM. The center is now under the direction of Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Palo Alto, CA.
We offer a lunch function through Subway.
To read timely announcements and find out what will be happening during our next meeting, read our SVCB Phone Tree Message.
by Michelle McGrew
See: SVCB Phone Tree Message that follows.
SVCB Phone Tree Message
Our Next Membership Meeting: November 16, 2019, Vista Center San Jose Office, 101 N. Bascom Avenue, San Jose, CA 95128, 1-408-295-4016, from 9:00 AM. to 1 PM.
9:00: Coffee and conversation. The lunch order
deadline is 9:45.
10 AM to 11 AM: Program
11:10 AM to 12 PM: Business
12 PM to 1 PM: Lunch and socializing
SVCB Past Meeting Recordings
SVCB Program List
Choose a year, and then select stream or download.
SVCB Officers / Board Members
All SVCB Officers and Board Members may be contacted by phone at: 888-652-5333 (leave a message).
As of January 1, 2019:
President Susan Glass, email@example.com
Vice-President Alice Turner, firstname.lastname@example.org
Recording Secretary Rob Turner, email@example.com
Correspondence Secretary Naomi Grubb, firstname.lastname@example.org
Treasurer Vic Clifford, email@example.com
Board Members Mike Keithley, Lupe Medrano, Joe Silveria, firstname.lastname@example.org
Immediate Past-President Rob Turner, email@example.com
SVCB Committees / Chairpersons
All SVCB Committee members and Chairpersons may be contacted by phone at: 888-652-5333 (leave a message).
Barbara Rhodes Adaptive Technology Grant:
Chair: Alice Turner firstname.lastname@example.org
Committee: Alice Turner, John Glass, Susan Glass, Diane Harms, Bev Clifford, Lynette Kersey, Mike Keithley, Michelle McGrew email@example.com
Chair: Bev Clifford firstname.lastname@example.org
Committee: Bev Clifford, Susan Glass, Mike Keithley, Rob Turner email@example.com
Constitution & By-Laws Roger Peterson, firstname.lastname@example.org
Database Information Mike Keithley, email@example.com
Goodies Bev Clifford, firstname.lastname@example.org
Fund-raising Michelle McGrew, email@example.com
Hospitality Naomi Grubb, firstname.lastname@example.org
Chair: Susan Glass email@example.com
Copy Editor: Bev Clifford firstname.lastname@example.org
Legislation Mike Keithley, email@example.com
Membership Mike Keithley, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sound Mike Keithley, email@example.com
Transportation Lupe Medrano, firstname.lastname@example.org
Volunteers Naomi Grubb, email@example.com
Webmaster Vic Clifford, firstname.lastname@example.org
SVCB IN-TOUCH Newsletters
For online IN-TOUCH Newsletter review prior to 2019, email an access request to: email@example.com
SVCB Business Calendar
Become a member of SVCB
SVCB is a support group for visually impaired people. If you're visually impaired or want to help, become a member. Although our meetings are open to everyone interested in the blindness community, SVCB membership has these additional benefits for you:
· Opportunity to serve on the Board or committees and directly influence chapter activities in the blindness community.
· May participate in special SVCB activities such as parties and outings.
· Become a member of the California Council of the Blind, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for visually impaired people in California. SVCB is a local chapter of CCB, and we actively assist members to participate in CCB conferences and conventions as well as network within the CCB family.
· Become a member of the American Council of the Blind, the national organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for visually impaired people in America and the world. Since CCB is a state affiliate of ACB, you'll belong to the ACB family, and we help visually impaired people attend ACB conferences and convention.
Becoming an SVCB member is easy - fill out a membership application, and along with membership dues send it to P.O. Box 493, Mountain View, CA 94042-0493. Dues are $10 per year (or $13 if between 7/31 and 12/31 to cover through the next year). Click SVCB Membership Application for a print application to be downloaded that gives all the instructions. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call our voicemail box at 888-652-5333 (leave a message).
SVCB Barbara Rhodes Adaptive Technology Grant
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THE GRANT?
The purpose of the grant is to ensure greater economic opportunity and a richer quality of life for all blind and visually impaired people, which is also the goal of the California Council of the Blind (CCB).
In keeping with this goal, the Silicon Valley Council of the Blind (SVCB), a chapter of CCB, will make a grant of up to $1500 to a blind or visually impaired person who can best demonstrate the need for adaptive technology that will improve his/her quality of life or advance his/her educational and/or employment opportunities.
Examples of items that the grant might fund include, but are not limited to:
WHO WAS BARBARA RHODES
Barbara Rhodes was a respected and valued member of SVCB from 1991 (when she joined the organization) until her death in 2007. She was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa midway through her adult life. Friends and colleagues remember her good-natured (if sometimes feisty and outspoken) tendencies whenever issues of accessibility for blind and visually impaired people arose. She was a born advocate. A native New Yorker, she, along with her husband Bill and their son Kenneth, moved to San Jose, California, in 1976 where they bought a home in Almaden.
With CCB, Barbara worked tirelessly on the Committee for Access and Transportation (CAT), the Governmental Affairs Committee, the Public Relations Committee, and the Seniors with Vision Loss Committee. In San Jose, she served on the Elderly and Disabled Advisory Committee and the San Jose Disability Advisory Commission. This latter group was responsible for getting over 40 audible pedestrian signals installed throughout the city of San Jose and Santa Clara County. Barbara was passionate about accessible health care, and her voice did much to influence California's Kaiser Hospital system to implement "talking pill bottles," that make taking prescription medications infinitely easier for blind and visually impaired patients.
Barbara Rhodes lived a committed life. Her legacy is one of determination and concrete accomplishment.
WHAT ARE THE QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE GRANT?
The qualifications for the grant are as follows - the individual must be:
· Legally blind
· A resident of one of the following counties: San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, or San Benito
· Sixteen years of age or older
· Planning to use the technology for educational, vocational or quality of life purposes
· Seeking technology that the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation or other service/educational organizations will not fund or do not have available
WHO WILL SELECT THE WINNERS?
The winners will be selected by a task force comprised of SVCB chapter members who will read all applications and select a winner.
WHAT IS THE AWARD PROCESS?
The award process consists of a completed application, which must be postmarked no later than Thursday, February 28, 2019.
The Barbara Rhodes Technology Grant task force will review all applications. If you are selected as a finalist, you will be invited to meet with the committee for an in-person or telephone interview. The committee will notify the winner by early April, and present the application award at our May 18 general membership meeting, where the winner will be invited to attend a special ceremony.
HOW DO YOU APPLY FOR A GRANT?
Individuals who are applying for the grant need to complete the following steps:
1. Submit a completed application form, see: Application Form Please fill in all the blanks.
Note: If you would like coaching to get you started on your application, call 888-652-5333 or email email@example.com. A committee member will contact you.
2. Write a 200-word personal statement, typed and double-spaced. At the end of the application form, you will find instructions explaining what is required in the statement.
Note: Some information asked for in the personal statement is the same as in the application form. Consider the statement an opportunity to tell your story more fully, using, if necessary, the facts listed in the application form.
3. Be sure to include a letter from an eye care professional, medical doctor, or blindness professional stating that you are legally blind.
IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS, leave voicemail at 888-652-5333, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more info about the Barbara Rhodes Technology Grant, call 888-652-5333 or email email@example.com. Click SVCB Barbara Rhodes Grant for a print application to be downloaded that gives all the instructions.
SVCB Constitution & By-Laws
SVCB Resource Links
American Foundation for the Blind - "Were the dreamers and the doers, improving the lives of the more than 20 million Americans who experience blindness or vision loss by amplifying those voices and ensuring equitable access for all." https://www.afb.org/default.aspx
This website shares information about audio described events in the Bay Area for the Blind and Visually Impaired (BVI). We also list shows featuring ASL and relaxed events for neurodivergent folks.
Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors - Departs every Sunday at noon from Pier 40 in San Francisco.
Visit www.baads.org or call: 415-281-0212
Bay Area Outreach and Recreation Program (BORP) - BORP believes that everyone should have access to the unique challenges that outdoor recreation provides, and makes every effort to accommodate each person's needs, including providing transportation and volunteer support. Visit http://www.borp.org/ or call 510-843-4398 (Lori Gray)
Bookshare Bookshare makes reading easier. Access a huge collection of ebooks for people with reading barriers.
Breast Cancer Support Group - For questions, call Lori Scharff
516-887-1336, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Business.com - Information on business plans, adaptive speech-accessible technology, marketing strategies, funding, training, networking and more - all tailored specifically for entrepreneurs with vision impairments and other disabilities
Classical Guitar Using Braille Lets Play
With Lets Play, people who are blind or visually impaired can take lessons, and read music using Braille.
Common Good Careers - A mission-driven search firm that is committed to social impact. Our purpose is to support the hiring needs of organizations that are dedicated to tackling todays most pressing social problems. Contact Jessica Mah at: http://www.commongoodcareers.org
Council of Citizens with Low Vision International (CCLVI) - CCLVI is an advocacy membership organization for people with low vision ability. The monthly "Let's Talk Low Vision" conferences from CCLVI can be accessed as podcasts at: www.airsla.org/cclvidd.asp. www.cclvi.org/
County of Santa Clara
Office of Emergency Services
Public Risk Communication Officer
Office of the County Executive
55 West Younger Avenue, Suite 450, San Jose, CA 95110-1721
Office: 1-408-808-7818 Cell: 1-408-386-3055
When you live with a physical disability or illness, keeping fit can be difficult.
Users, Inc. - Publishes Handbook to Help People Who Are
Blind Decide If the Guide Dog Lifestyle is Right for Them. Guide Dog Users,
Inc. (GDUI), the largest membership and advocacy organization representing
guide dog handlers in the United States, is pleased to announce the recent
publication of a revised handbook for perspective guide dog users which shares
comprehensive information about acquiring and using a guide dog for safe and
independent travel. "A Handbook for the Prospective Guide Dog
Handler" is available as an E-book and in print from Amazon.com, Smashwords,
and other online sellers. Visit this link for further information and to
explore options for purchase:
Help Colleagues With Disabilities Succeed in Meetings - If youre working with a colleague with a disability in a new capacity, you probably have questions about how to address their needs. You and your organization can easily make accommodations for your colleague, whether youre working with them remotely or in person. Heres how to respectfully hold meetings with or onboard a disabled colleague. https://www.conferencecalling.com/blog/help-colleagues-with-disabilities-in-meetings/
Hidden Talent - How Leading Companies Hire, Retain, and Benefit from People with Disabilities, edited by Mark L. Lengnick-Hall https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0275992896
Hotlines - current issues for blind persons:
800-221-6359, after 5 PM and weekends
800-424-8666, 3-9 PM and weekends
Lighthouse For the Blind and Visually Impaired - Promote the equality and self-reliance of people who are blind or visually impaired through rehabilitation training, employment placement, Enchanged Hills camp and other relevant services. www.Lighthouse-sf.org 1-415-431-1481
National Braille Press - Supports a lifetime of opportunity for blind children through braille literacy and provides access to information that empowers blind people to actively engage in work, family, and community affairs. http://www.nbp.org/ 1-617-266-6160 or 1-888-965-8965
Navigating Learning Disabilities and the Cost for Treatment Simple Dollar's guide that outlines how to afford out of pocket treatment costs, and provides information on specific rights and services offered to families of children with learning disabilities. https://www.thesimpledollar.com/navigating-learning-disabilities-and-the-cost-for-treatment/
Online Shopping For Consumers With Disabilities From wikibuy a blog guide designed to help people with vision impairment and other common disabilities regain their independence by shopping online. The resources mentioned will help individuals with low vision, colorblindness, or dyslexia have a positive online user experience by helping them read whats on their computer, tablet, or smartphone screen. https://wikibuy.com/blog/online-shopping-for-consumers-with-disabilities-f45fffeeb5c2
Online Writers Group for the Blind
Our goal is to
improve the quality of our writing by sharing and discussing our work with each
other. If you are a lover of fine writing, we encourage you to join us. Even if
you're not an author yourself, you can help by critiquing.
We have created a mailing list, Writersretreat on groups.io. There you can post any writing you wish the group to discuss. To subscribe to the group, send email to email@example.com. The link to the group is groups.io/g/writersretreat/topics.
Research Opportunities tbd
Silicon Valley Council of the Blind (SVCB) Board Meeting
SVCB Board meeting. Call-in:
800-662-6992; ID: 1184109. If you're not on the Board but wish to attend, contact the SVCB President beforehand.
Silicon Valley Independent Living Center (SVILC) - A non-profit, non-residential organization which serves all people with all types of disabilities, including seniors with disabling conditions, who live in Santa Clara County. http://www.svilc.org/ 1-408-894-9041
VISTA Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired - Empowers individuals who are blind or visually impaired to embrace life to the fullest through evaluation, counseling, education and training. http://www.vistacenter.org/
1-650-858-0202 or 800-660-2009
2500 El Camino Real, Suite 100, Palo Alto, CA 94306
VTA/ACCESS - VTA ensures a comparable paratransit service is provided to eligible individuals with disabilities who cannot use conventional public transit service due to their physical, visual or cognitive disabilities. Read to learn more about paratransit Service, eligibility, and how to apply.
VTA Access: Call 408-321-2380. After dialing the VTA Access number, press 1 for English or press 0 for an agent and you'll get the recording you need. Then press 1 to schedule a ride, 2 to cancel a ride, 3 for status of a ride (late vehicle), and 4 for general info and client account info. With complaints, concerns, or compliments: call Robert Gebo at 408-321-5954. Your Guide to the Disability Process
SVCB Local Activities
Tabard Theatre shows: To order tickets, call the Tabard box office at 408-679-2330 and speak to Marilyn Watts, or visit tabardtheatre.org. SVCB members and Blind Center clients should use Discount Code BC27 when ordering. Performances take place at The Tabard Theatre, 29 North San Pedro Street, San Jose, CA 95110.
2019-2020 Season New Beginnings
The Tin Woman Oct 25 Nov 17, 2019
A Taffeta Christmas Dec 6 22, 2019
A New Brain Jan 10-26, 2020
The 39 Steps Feb 7 Mar 1, 2020
Baby Mar 13 Apr 5, 2020
The Secret Garden Apr 17 May 10, 2020
For shows described by AudioVision:
Get tickets for Broadway San Jose by calling 866-395-2929. Performances are at the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts (SJCPA), 255 West Almaden Boulevard, San Jose, on Sundays at 6:30 PM unless noted. Note:
For all San Francisco productions (Golden Gate and Orpheum theatres): Tickets are generally on sale four weeks before the production opens. To charge tickets and reserve receivers, call
Santa Clara County - New Voting Experience:
Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters is modernizing voting and providing voters with greater flexibility and convenience.
Starting with the March 3, 2020 Presidential Primary Election:
1. Every registered voter will receive a Vote By Mail ballot starting 29 days before
2. Voters can vote at any of the Vote Centers in Santa Clara County
3. Approximately 25 Vote Centers will open for 11 days including Election Day and
approximately 100 Vote Centers will be open for 4 days including Election Day
for a total of 125 Vote Centers throughout the County on Election Day
4. Vote Centers will offer more space, additional services and new enhanced
VOTERS will have more options and will get to choose WHEN, WHERE, and HOW to vote!
USE YOUR VOTE BY MAIL BALLOT
GET A BALLOT AT A VOTE CENTER
Check out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNjrJ4KeVzE
Vista Center Tech User Group Meetings. If you are interested, please send a message to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Director of Access Technology
Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired
2500 El Camino Real, Suite 100
Palo Alto, CA 94306
650-858-0202 ext. 123
Please join us at Vista Center Palo Alto for an interesting opportunity to participate in a Stanford University Community based project. Noted below are the details and request to RSVP to Son Kim at email@example.com.
Date and Time: Wednesday, November 13 from 2 pm to 4 pm
Location: Vista Center Palo Alto, 2500 El Camino Real Suite 100, Palo Alto
RSVP: ASAP to Son Kim at firstname.lastname@example.org
Note from the Speaker, a long-term professor at Stanford
The Role of Community Members in Stanford's Assistive Technology Course
David L. Jaffe, MS
Lecturer, Stanford University, Mechanical Engineering Design Group
Dave will describe the critical role that older adults and people with disabilities play as they work with teams of Stanford students to design and fabricate prototype devices that address their real problems and challenges. He will also invite project suggestions for the upcoming course.
Please join us to learn about how you can offer problems to Professor Jaffe, and your challenge may be selected by the Stanford Students. This is a great opportunity to find a solution to a daily challenge for those who are blind or visually impaired, and work with students to develop a solution.
SVCB Membership Spotlights
Dawn Wilcox - Sea Trials: Around the World With Duct Tape and Bailing Wire by Wendy Hinman is now available on Bookshare. A shipwreck might end a dream of circumnavigating the globe. Not for the Wilcox family. In 1973, the Wilcox family sets off to sail around the world aboard the 40-foot sailboat, Vela. Do enjoy Dawn Wilcoxs saga as written by her daughter-in-law, Wendy Hinman.