Winning Solutions for Failing Sight
Serving Our Community Since 1979

Spring 2016



by Ms. Terry Eason, Executive Director

Hello again to our readers!  Many of you have called and asked for, as well as made generous donations, to assist LVC in the production of this EyePower newsletter.  It is quite costly and we are hoping to be able to send it out and perhaps set it up online and with social media in the near future, thus reducing the expense and still providing you with much needed information.  Please let us know if you are receptive and able to receive our newsletter online.


Where to start, so much to share with you!  First we begin by telling you that LVC, in conjunction with our associates from Envision Technology and Vision Support Services, will be hosting another Tech Tuesday on May 3rd here in our offices on Del Ray Ave.  See within for more details.

Next we offer you valuable information about area resources such as free audio services, eyeglass assistance, and LVC presentations.  We hope you will let us know if this information is helpful to you.  Your input keeps us on our toes!

We offer to you ideas of how you can help LVC simply by doing your Amazon shopping on AmazonSmile, designating Low Vision Information Center as the recipient of your donation.  Also, we remind you that those unused CCTVs can be helpful in many ways by being donated to LVC.

Finally, we offer our thanks to the folks who keep our doors open, our many donors and especially those foundations and organizations that provide us with grants to assist us in our most necessary work.  Please remember LVC in your charitable donations.  You can make a donation to us by check via mail, credit or debit card on our website www.lowvisioninfo.org, donor-advised funds, legacy gifts, and stock donations.

Thank you for your support!  We are so happy to be able to provide you with this current issue of EyePower.  We hope you enjoy!

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Technology Tuesday - May 3rd, 2016 - 10:00 - 3:00

Mark your calendars for our upcoming Tech Tuesday event on May 3rd from 10:00 - 3:00.  We will be joining our associates from Envision Technology and Vision Support Services, both located here in our building at 4905 Del Ray Ave, offering the latest devices, technology, equipment and services available today that are designed to help the visually impaired who are struggling to remain independent.  The event will be held simultaneously here at our office in Suite 504 and at the offices of Envision Technology and Vision Support in Suite 320.  Our last Technology Tuesday was a huge success!  Come out and explore what is new in vision support.  Look for the flyer inside of this newsletter in our local areas.

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Free Audio Services Available to Those with Low Vision:

Did you know there are several FREE audio services offered to those with low vision?  Listed here are the services LVC discusses, demonstrates and provides application assistance for here at our Center.

National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped Library of Congress, Talking Book Program:  A simple application, signed by a certifying authority, will get you enrolled in the free program.  You will receive a digital audio player that plays digital talking books.  Audio books of all subject matter are available, your selections of audio books will be sent directly to you free of charge and can be returned in the same mailer free of charge through the US Mail.  To request an application or learn more call 1-888-NLS-READ (1-888-657-7323) or visit www.loc.gov/nis.

Choice Magazine Listening (CML):  Once you are enrolled in the National Library of Congress program, and have received their digital audio player, you will have access to CML.  Choice Magazine Listening is a free quarterly audio magazine anthology playable through the Library of Congress's (NLS) BARD program.  Listen to twelve hours of the brightest and best articles, stories, essays and poems from over 100 of the finest periodicals.  Selected pieces are wonderfully read by some of America's top audiobook narrators.  Eligible subscribers can download back issues (from 2007 on) or receive digital cartridges via free-matter mailing from the USPS.  For more information call 1-888-724-6423 with any questions.

The Metropolitan Washington Ear:  You will receive a pre-tuned radio where audio programs, read by volunteers, include current publications -- national and local newspapers, magazines, and best-selling books.  Readings include special interest information covering consumer concerns, general and grocery shopping, home management, sports, music, the arts, business, world affairs, health and aging.  Contact the Metropolitan Washington Ear at 301-681-6636.

NFB-Newsline:  Another audio program available to you after you have registered with NLS Talking Book Program is Newsline.  Here you will have access to over 300 newspapers and over 40 magazines.  For more information call 1-866-504-7300 or online at http://nfb.org/audio-newspaper-service.

U.S. Currency Reader Program:  The Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) is providing an iBill Talking Banknote Identifier at no cost to eligible visually impaired persons.  The compact device identifies the denomination of the bill inserted.  To request one, you must mail in an application which is available at LVC or download from www.bep.gov.  LVC has a currency reader available to demonstrate.

For more information or help with applying for these services, feel free to call LVC at (301) 951-4444.

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Eyeglass Assistance:

For those needing financial assistance with the purchase of prescription glasses, there are some agencies who provide help.

Prevention of Blindness Society of Metropolitan Washington:  The Eyeglasses for the Needy program provides thousands of homeless and low-income persons in the metropolitan area with new glasses or repairs broken ones.  This program helps people receive the eye health care they need at a price they can afford.  For more information call (202) 234-1010.

Lions Club Assistance Program:  Lions Clubs provide resources for individuals who are blind or have severe vision or hearing loss.  A local Lions club in or near your community may sponsor a program that provides assistance for the purchase of eyeglasses or hearing aids.  To find a club near you visit www.lionsclubs.org or call 301-599-7600.

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Low Vision Fit-Over Eyewear:

"Glare" is difficulty seeing in the presence of bright light such as direct or reflected sunlight or artificial light such as fluorescent lighting.  LVC demonstrates Low Vision Eyewear designed to be worn alone or over prescription glasses.  Depending on the color lens chosen, the Fit-Over Eyewear can help reduce glare, maximize brightness, provide heightened contrast in low light conditions, or improve object definition and clarity.  If wearing the glasses as fit-overs with prescription glasses it is important for a proper fit.  Make an appointment with LVC to come explore the many options and be fitted for Low Vision Fit-Over Glasses.

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LVC Presentations:

LVC has an extensive Outreach Program throughout the year visiting many Senior Living Communities and Assisted Living Communities.  LVC also participates in community health fairs and low vision events.  LVC's outreach presents a brief opening regarding our role in the community, our services offered here at our office in Bethesda, answers questions from the audience and offers the opportunity for attendees to view products and devices on display as well as hands-on experience exploring magnifiers and household aids.  If your community has a low vision population that could benefit from a presentation by LVC, have the Activities Coordinator contact us at 301-951-4444 to discuss this opportunity.

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LVC's most well-received presentation:

LVC's most well-received presentation this year was "Low Down on Lighting."  Lighting is a key element in better visual acuity.  Some helpful hints with lighting are:
  1. Provide light throughout the room along with additional task lighting near your activity area.
  2. To prevent shadows when writing, place the lamps on the opposite side of the hand being used.
  3. With appropriate shades, cover bare bulbs of all types to reduce glare.
  4. Even levels of lighting both inside and out make it easier for your eyes to adapt preventing "light blindness."  Leave a foyer light on when entering a dark house on a sunny day.  Keep rooms evenly lit when moving around within your home.
  5. In hallways and stairways, provide generous amounts of light positioned to shine on walls, floors, steps, and railings.  LED nightlights with rotating heads for directional lighting are helpful.
  6. Outdoor paths and walkways should be well lit at night.

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The Low Vision Center participates in the AmazonSmile program.  AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know: same products, same prices, same service.  When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to the Low Vision Center.  To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device.  On your first visit to AmazonSmile you will need to select Low Vision Information Center as the charitable organization to receive donations from your eligible purchases before you begin shopping.  There will be a menu in the upper right hand corner of the Home page where you can search for "Low Vision Information Center" to select.  AmazonSmile will remember your charitable selection as Low Vision Information Center and every eligible purchase you make at smile.amazon.com will result in a donation.  Or, you may want to bookmark the link https://smile.amazon.com/ch/52-1155044 which will directly support LVC every time you shop at AmazonSmile.

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Used CCTVs:

Do you or a loved one have a CCTV, video magnifier or reading machine, stashed somewhere like the basement or attic that is no longer being used?  You can make a donation to the Low Vision Center of these machines.  It is our goal to get this used equipment to other visually impaired individuals who are in need yet not able to buy new.  As a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, LVC can provide you with a letter for your tax records of this donation. Call us at 301-951-4444 or email us at lowvisionctr@aol.com with "CCTV" in the subject line for more information.  Go to our website www.lowvisioninfo.org to see the list of the current CCTVs available.

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Thank You!

Have you missed our newsletter?  We could not be mailing this out to you without the support of several grants and generous donors including many of you, our clients.  We would especially like to thank a local Bethesda Foundation and the Woman's Club of Chevy Chase (WCCC) for their generous grants to LVC.  We would like to thank the wonderful members of the WCCC for the amazing donation of over 80 pairs of eyeglasses!  These glasses will help people around the world with no vision correction available to see thanks to the Lions Club!

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"Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see."

-- Mark Twain

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