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News & Events

Click Here for our Calendar of Events

The Iris Network is always looking for new information and events in support of the blind and visually impaired. If you have some, send information to Regal Naseef, Director of Communication at rnaseef@theiris.org.


VRT Appreciation Week

Anne Sullivan and her Contribution to the Field of VRT

Adapted from article by Steve Kelly, Recruitment & Retention Committee,

AER Vision Rehabilitation Therapy Division

Appearing in the Spring 2015 VRT Newsletter 

VRT Appreciation Week (the second week in April) which features the birthday of Anne Sullivan on April 14. 

Commemorating Anne Sullivan, Helen Keller’s teacher, as part of VRT Awareness, is a natural fit for the profession. Ironically, it’s been my observation that most individuals outside our profession have no idea what a Vision Rehab Therapist does, yet most people, of all ages, know that Anne Sullivan was a great teacher for her pupil, Helen Keller who became... Continue Reading

Hadley Discussion Groups

Call in by phone or computer. Free of charge. Open to all.

Hadley discussion groups, customized for people who are visually impaired, can be found the link below. Groups include:

  • Crafting Circle
  • Writers’ Circle
  • Hadley Growers
  • Resource Roundtable
  • What’s Cooking?
  • Tech it Out
  • Get Up and Go!
  • Travel Talk
  • Spanish
  • Embracing Braille 

Click here for the link: https://hadley.edu/discussions/

 

Disclaimer: These resources are not associated with The Iris Network; we are just sharing them with our constituents. If you would like to opt-out of this email distribution list, please notify The Iris Network at rnaseef@theiris.org.

New Episode: COVID-19 and Vision Loss Part 2

Hadley Presents

COVID-19 and Vision Loss Part 2 

In this episode, we continue the conversation on living during the COVID-19 pandemic with a visual impairment. Listen in as we share some experiences, tips, and strategies for coping during these difficult times. 

Click here to listen: 

Survey: Flattening the Inaccessibility Curve

Vision Serve Alliance

Flatten Inaccessibility 

Important Survey to Share: Flattening the InAccessibility Curve 

VisionServe Alliance joins many other organizations and companies in a collaborative project to collect data and information about the experiences of adults who are blind or have low vision during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our goal is to understand how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting the lives of adults with visual impairments and to identify solutions for these challenges. Participants will have the opportunity to share their experiences in the following areas:

•         Healthcare

•         Transportation

•        ... Continue Reading

FREE Audible Stories!

Audible Stories is offering free access to educational and entertaining audiobook content. Anyone, in any country, can enjoy unlimited streaming of hundreds of titles for kids and families for free with selections available in six languages. Start listening to Audible Stories here.

 

Disclaimer: The language or views expressed in this notice are not associated with The Iris Network; we are just sharing it with our constituents. If you would like to opt-out of this email distribution list, please notify The Iris Network at rnaseef@theiris.org.

Fill out the US 2020 Census!

Census 2020

United States Census 2020

WHY FILLING  OUT YOUR CENSUS FORM MATTERS! 

It’s important or the U.S. 2020 Census to get an accurate count of Americans. This will drive allocation of enormous amounts of federal funding that advances the missions of many nonprofits including The Iris Network to support people who are blind or visually impaired. The census also plays a critical role in political redistricting, which could change the balance of power in many communities. 

Most households received their invitation to respond to the 2020 Census between March 12-20. These official Census Bureau mailings will include detailed information and a Census ID for completing the Census online. In... Continue Reading

New Episode: COVID-19 and Vision Loss

The COVID-19 crisis has brought a wave of change and uncertainty to our everyday lives. Listen in as we share personal experiences, resources and some helpful tips...all from a blind or low vision perspective.
 
Click Here to listen to the podcast by Hadley Presents - COVID-19 and Vision Loss
 
Disclaimer: The language or views expressed in this podcast are not associated with The Iris Network; we are just sharing this resource with our constituents. If you would like to opt-out of this email distribution list, please notify The Iris Network at rnaseef@theiris.org.

FREE RESOURCES & BOOKS for you!



National Braille Press (NBP) – FREE downloads of three NBP titles

 

To help with some of the practical challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, we're offering free digital downloads of three relevant books, between now and April 30th: 

Dinner Delivered: Accessible and Easy Ways to Receive Meals Direct to Your Door
by Kim Loftis and Chris Grabowski

Getting Visual Assistance with an iPhone
by Judith Dixon

Navigating Healthcare, When All They Can See Is that You Can't
by Deborah Kendrick

Downloadable formats include DAISY, BRF, and Microsoft Word. Hard copy versions of these books are also available at half price.

If you or someone that you know could benefit from one or all of these... Continue Reading

SHOP ONLINE to support The Iris Network

NOW IS A TIME when you can conveniently shop online (for food products, basic necessities, cleaning supplies, or anything you need) while giving back to The Iris Network! 

If you haven’t already done so, simply go to https://smile.amazon.com to set up an account (or sign in if you have one) and select The Iris Network as your cause before you shop. 

We appreciate your support of our service – helping people who are visually impaired or blind attain independence and community integration.

Notice from The Iris Network

Notice from The Iris Network: To Protect Our Community 

The Iris Network staff and board are thinking about you and all of our clients at this challenging time. We do hope you and your families are safe and free of any illness. 

Out of an abundance of caution and due to the health of some of the clients we serve, The Iris Network is continuing to take the precautionary measure of having non-service staff work remotely based on the CDC’s recommendation of social isolation. Currently, as of March 20, 2020, community and center-based staff will continue to serve clients under modified conditions, using technology while following CDC guidelines regarding clients over 60 years of age. Our... Continue Reading

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« April 2020 »
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  • Bangor Disability Peer Support Group

    Bangor Disability Peer Support Group

    04/ 2/2020 05:30 PM to 07:30 PM

    Bangor Disability Peer Support Group 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m at Advanced Modifications in Hermon; the number is 848-8226 This group meets on the first Thursday of each month. FMI: contact Alpha One in Bangor at 207-941-6553, TTY 877-229-8954

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  • DOVER LOW VISION GROUP

    DOVER LOW VISION GROUP

    04/ 3/2020 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM

    Who are we?

    We are a support group.  We provide connection to others who are blind or visually impaired as well as their spouses, partners, friends etc.

    Employees of the Division of the Blind and Visually Impaired (DBVI) also attend to provide information and access to services to anyone experiencing visual impairment or blindness.

    MEETING TIME AND PLACE

    We meet on the FIRST FRIDAY of each month.  We meet from 10:00 A.M. to 11:30 A.M. in the community center at Thayer Parkway, Dover-Foxcroft.

    PLEASE JOIN US!  Any questions, contact:

    Nancy, 564-0036 OR  Marlana, 564-0332.

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  • The Lewiston Auburn Support Group

    The Lewiston Auburn Support Group

    04/ 4/2020

    The Lewiston Auburn Support Group meets from 12-1 the first Saturday of the month at George’s Pizza in Auburn. FMI please call Leon Proctor at 212-1455.

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  • Behind Our Eyes Group

    Behind Our Eyes Group

    04/ 5/2020 08:00 PM to 09:00 PM

    April 3rd, 2011: Behind Our Eyes 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. This group meets through phone calls to discuss writings, listen to speakers and network with fellow writers. Meetings are held the first and third Sunday of each month. Contact Elisa Busch at 571-257-7355 or glbusch@comcast.net for more information.

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  • The Sunshine Club

    The Sunshine Club

    04/ 7/2020

    The Sunshine Club, Meets the 1st Tuesday of each month from 11:00 to 1:00 at the Lobster Trap on 25 Bay St. Winslow.  Contact Betty Soule for more information about the Sunshine Club or to participate at (207) 872-2967 or (207) 557-5181. Click here for more information.

  • VIP Group of Boothbay Harbor

    VIP Group of Boothbay Harbor

    04/ 7/2020 01:00 PM to 02:30 PM

    Visually Impaired Persons (VIP) group in Boothbay Harbor meets the first Tuesday of every month from 1:00-2:30pm at the Community Center located in the Meadow Mall, 185 Townsend Ave, Boothbay Harbor, Maine. There is no meeting in July. For more information, contact Mollie Moore at 207-633-3810 or Joan Stark at 207-633-2498.

  • Visually Impaired Support Team Alliance or VISTA

    Visually Impaired Support Team Alliance or VISTA

    04/ 7/2020

    Originated in the Augusta area, allowing people with a vision impairment to meet in an informal environment to talk about our challenges and how we overcome those challenges.  We mentor and support one another by listening to one another, offering encouragement, and praising one another for overcoming and achieving.  No achievement is ever too small!  We meet on the First and Third Tuesdays of each month.  The time is 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm EST.  We welcome you!  for more information, please call or write: Leona McKenna 207-333-7087

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  • The Rainbow Club

    The Rainbow Club

    04/13/2020

    The Rainbow Club, Meets the 2nd Monday of each monthat the American Legion Post 205, 396 Eastern Ave. in Augusta Lunch cost is $7.00. Please contact Barbara Potter for more information and to R.S.V.P. at (207) 622-3512 Click here for more information

  • A support group for clients with low vision is available in the Bangor area

    A support group for clients with low vision is available in the Bangor area

    04/13/2020 01:00 PM to 02:30 PM

    In collaboration with Maine’s Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired (DBVI) and The Iris Network, a support group for clients with low vision in the Bangor area has formed with an initial six members and is open for new members to join. They meet at the Career Center on the second and forth Monday every month at 1-2:30pm.  Family and friends are also invited. Sessions are now led by DBVI or The Iris Network staff, addressing participants’ areas of interest where members share their experiences and needs. For more information, contact Sue Summers at ssummers@theiris.org.

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  • The Cumberland County Support Group

    The Cumberland County Support Group

    04/15/2020 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM

    The Cumberland County Support Group meets on the third Wednesdayof each month from 10:00AM-noon at The Iris Network, 189 Park Avenue, Portland. We invite those who are blind or have low vision and their family members to come make friends and share resources. FMI please contact Randy Bellavance at (207) 212-8613 or rbellavanceNFBME@gmail.com.

  • State Rehabilitation Council Call-In

    State Rehabilitation Council Call-In

    04/15/2020 10:00 AM to 01:00 PM

    State Rehabilitation Council for the Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired.  Any member of the public is welcome to call in.

    The numbers are 1-877-455-0244  Passcode: 5939748264#

    Call-in times: 10am-1pm

    2019 meetings: December 18.

    2020 meetings: February 19; April 15; June 17; August 19; October TBD; December 16.

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  • Behind Our Eyes Group

    Behind Our Eyes Group

    04/19/2020 08:00 PM to 09:00 PM

    April 3rd, 2011: Behind Our Eyes 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. This group meets through phone calls to discuss writings, listen to speakers and network with fellow writers. Meetings are held the first and third Sunday of each month. Contact Elisa Busch at 571-257-7355 or glbusch@comcast.net for more information.

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  • Visually Impaired Support Team Alliance or VISTA

    Visually Impaired Support Team Alliance or VISTA

    04/21/2020

    Originated in the Augusta area, allowing people with a vision impairment to meet in an informal environment to talk about our challenges and how we overcome those challenges.  We mentor and support one another by listening to one another, offering encouragement, and praising one another for overcoming and achieving.  No achievement is ever too small!  We meet on the First and Third Tuesdays of each month.  The time is 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm EST.  We welcome you!  for more information, please call or write: Leona McKenna 207-333-7087

  • Waterville Disability Peer Support Group

    Waterville Disability Peer Support Group

    04/21/2020 06:00 PM to 07:30 PM

    Waterville Disability Peer Support Group 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Pleasant Street
    United Methodist Church. This group meets each month on the third Tuesday of the month. For more information, contact Alpha One in Bangor at (207) 941-6553 or TTY (877) 229-8954.

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  • Visual Impairment Service Team (VIST) Education and Support Group

    Visual Impairment Service Team (VIST) Education and Support Group

    04/23/2020 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM

    Education and Support group hosted by the Visual Impairment Services Team at VA Maine: 4th Thursday of the month from 10-11:30am (except Nov. and Dec. when it occurs the 3rd Thursday).  This is a closed group for veterans enrolled in the VA Maine Visual Impairment Services Team (VIST) program.  Contact Amy Tague at 1-877-421-8263, ext. 5944 for more information on how to participate.

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  • A support group for clients with low vision is available in the Bangor area

    A support group for clients with low vision is available in the Bangor area

    04/27/2020 01:00 PM to 02:30 PM

    In collaboration with Maine’s Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired (DBVI) and The Iris Network, a support group for clients with low vision in the Bangor area has formed with an initial six members and is open for new members to join. They meet at the Career Center on the second and forth Monday every month at 1-2:30pm.  Family and friends are also invited. Sessions are now led by DBVI or The Iris Network staff, addressing participants’ areas of interest where members share their experiences and needs. For more information, contact Sue Summers at ssummers@theiris.org.

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  • The Wells Support Group

    The Wells Support Group

    04/29/2020

    The Wells Support Group, For people with vision impairments and their significant others, Wells Congregational Church, Post Road (US Route 1) last Wednesday of the month from September until June (except July and August), from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. FMI call Brenda Bacon 207-646-7079.

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