edited by Sharon Strzalkowski
The announcement of products and services in this column does not represent an endorsement by the American Council of the Blind, its officers, or staff. Listings are free of charge for the benefit of our readers. “The ACB Braille Forum” cannot be held responsible for the reliability of the products and services mentioned. To submit items for this column, send a message to [email protected], or phone the national office at 1-800-424-8666, and leave a message in Sharon Lovering’s mailbox. Information must be received at least two months ahead of publication date.
Applications for Roeder Scholarship Now Available
Applications for the Joseph Roeder Assistive Technology Scholarship are now available on the NIB web site, www.nib.org/content/roeder-scholarship-application. The scholarship provides a one-time award of $2,500 for an individual who is blind to pursue education in computer science, information systems or a related field leading to a career in access technology.
The scholarship is named for Joe Roeder, senior accessible technology specialist at NIB from 1997 until his death in 2010. Roeder was instrumental in the development of the Section 508 electronic and information technology accessibility standards of the Rehabilitation Act, which require all federal government agencies to provide accessible data and information for employees with disabilities.
Applications and supporting documents must be submitted online no later than Friday, May 27, 2016. Top candidates will be interviewed by phone in June, and the winner will be announced this summer.
Beacon Lodge Summer Camp Offerings
Pennsylvania Lions Beacon Lodge offers a variety of summer camps for children and adults with disabilities. The camp is located in Mount Union, Pa. Camp deadlines are coming up soon; see the session list below.
Adult sessions include:
Camps for blind and visually impaired adults, as follows:
July 9-14, Adult Session Six; deadline, June 30th;
July 16-26, Adult Session Seven; deadline, July 6th; and
July 30-August 9, Adult Session Eight, deadline, July 20th.
Children’s sessions include:
Camp A.L.I.V.E., June 11-16, Children’s Village One; deadline, June 1st.
June 18-21, Children’s Village Two; deadline, June 8th.
July 9-12, Children’s Village Five; deadline, June 30th.
Camp Energy, June 25-30, Children’s Village Three; deadline, June 15th.
Blind/Visually Impaired, July 16-23, Children’s Village Six; deadline, July 6th.
All sessions begin at noon on the arrival day; all campers must be picked up between 9 a.m. and noon on departure day. For more information, or an application, contact Pennsylvania Lions Beacon Lodge Camp at (814) 542-2511; e-mail [email protected]; or visit www.beaconlodge.com.
BANA Elects Officers
At its November 2015 meeting, the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) elected officers for 2016. They are: Jennifer Dunnam, chair (NFB); Sandra Ruconich, vice chair (ACB); Ruth Rozen, secretary (Hadley Institute); and Jackie Sheridan, treasurer (National Braille Press).
The new year has brought additional board changes. Diane Wormsley, who has represented AER (Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired) on the BANA board since 2004, has retired from her professorship at North Carolina Central University and plans to pursue other interests.
The new AER representative is Mary Nelle McLennan, who has been the representative from the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) since 2007 and just completed five years as BANA’s vice chair. Cathy Senft-Graves was appointed as the new representative from APH, where she is the braille literacy and technology project leader.
SeeLight App Helps with Navigation
Only 10 percent of traffic lights worldwide are currently equipped with audible signals or tactile paving. None of them have a GPS tag. In order to address this concern, Hungry Boys has created a free app called SeeLight, which assists the visually impaired when crossing streets.
The app has two parts. The first part, SeeLight, allows public authorities and individuals to share global traffic signal information (such as where the lights are located, duration of red and green signals, and whether the lights have audible signals or tactile paving) so the lights can be mapped. Visually impaired people can then access this information using SeeLightBlind, which helps guide them safely across roads using vibrations and voice navigation to determine direction and distance to the nearest crossing.
This app is currently available at the App Store. An Android version will be available soon.
The Selective Doctor, Inc. specializes in repairing Perkins braillers. If the keys on your brailler or sticking, or the paper isn’t rolling in properly, contact The Selective Doctor at (410) 668-1143 or e-mail [email protected] for an estimate, or more information. Send your brailler to: The Selective Doctor, Inc., PO Box 571, Manchester, MD 21102. You may send it via free matter for the blind, but be sure to insure it. Your brailler will be returned to you via U.S. mail. For more details, visit www.selectivedoctor.com, or call the number above.
Encouragement for the Week
Dave Andrus has worked for 30 years as a parish pastor – and has been blind for 40 years. That has given him a unique and refreshing view of the world, situations and God. Pastor Dave shares encouragement and hope. His weekly podcast is sent via e-mail as an attachment, or can be found in the iTunes Store. Send an e-mail to [email protected], or visit http://not-alone.net.