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2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

VISIONS/ Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Blind & Visually Impaired Centers, Disabilities, Eye Diseases, Blindness & Vision Impairments, Health, Human Services, Job Training, Vocational Rehabilitation

Mission: VISIONS, incorporated in 1926, was founded by a group of women who believed in offering opportunities for independence, employment, socialization, vocational rehabilitation and family services for people who are blind or visually impaired. VISIONS continues its original mission of promoting the independence of people of all ages who are blind or visually impaired. Our vision is for everyone to see what is possible!

Results: #1 in New York State in job placements of people who are legally blind for three years in a row Majority of participants at VISIONS at Selis Manor and VISIONS Center on Aging senior center and VISIONS Center on Blindness have increased their physical activity, report increased positive feelings about themselves and less depression and better adjustment to blindness, improved social connections and increased social networks and improved skills including daily living, mobility, technology, fitness and access to information Over 750 unpaid caregivers have received support and services

Target demographics: people of all ages with blindness and severe loss and their families

Direct beneficiaries per year: 2018 we impacted the lives of over 7000 people

Geographic areas served: the Metropolitan New York City area, NYC, Long Island, Westshester, Rockland Counties

Programs: vision rehabilitation in-home, community and the workplace; pre-employment and job placement services; children, youth, adult and senior services at two sites in Manhattan,NY and a short-term residential vocational rehabilitation center in Rockland County, NY. Family and unpaid caregiver support services are provided in all neighborhoods and all service sites. VISIONS at Selis Manor: the number of volunteers increased to over 200. There has been an increase in the type of classes offered to adults and seniors including new support groups and assistive technology training. Collaborations with numerous organizations through free training, workshops, etc. has increased. Over 1000 blind participants are registered for services with an additional number of indiviudals attending meetings, seminars, drop-in services, library and bowling clubs.

Community Stories

72 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Michael V. Oneal

Board Member

Rating: 5

I write not really as a board member, but as a volunteer advisory board member, having been introduced to the organization by a dynamic member of the organization who urged me to get involved with Visions. My involvment consisted of hiring an intern this past summer to work with me in my insurnace business. The young lady I hired was astonishing, very smart, pleasent, and a hard worker. What I've noticed about the organization so far is the tremendous job it's doing educating people about all what visual impairment is and helping those who have this disabilty with self-esteem issues and all the other issues related to learning how to function in society as a normal human being. I recently saw a documentary there about how individuals cope with blindness and near blindness, and I must say, pun intended, it was eye opening. I learned to much, and am grateful to have seen that film. This organization goes great work and is to be commended for the dedication to its mission. Sincerely, Michael Oneal

Niki C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Throughout my high school years of working at VISIONS, my eyes and ears have be opened to may new things. Most importantly, I've discovered how important my presence can be, regardless of how long I see the seniors for. It makes me happy that I am helping the community. I do not regret applying and working for this program as it is enjoyable and beneficial. It really is a fantastic program for the young and old alike.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been working with Visions for about three years now and It's been the most beneficial experience for me. When I first joined Visions in my junior year of high school, I was the average teenager who was skeptical about seniors and people with disabilities. Nevertheless, in my time with Visions, I've learned a vast amount of knowledge and matured on the subject of seniors and those with disabilities. In Visions, we lend a helping hand to seniors who suffer from any vision loss to the best of our ability. I as a volunteer, conduct home visits with another volunteer and provide assistance with household tasks. Tasks such as reading mail, reading the newspaper, grocery shopping, we even have friendly visits for seniors who just want someone to socialize with. The seniors I've met all from different generations share their stories of a better time. A simpler time, a history not know much amongst us teenagers. For 3 years, Visions has been a golden trophy of experience. I never thought I would have a favorite senior or have learned so much that I have learned now. Visions also prepares workshops and classes for the seniors to keep active. Painting, Knitting, and even fitness classes are one of the many activities these seniors partake in. Senior Speak-out is the high light of Visions. This is where this Organization truly shines. Senior Speak-out is a 4 hour event that takes place every Monday where seniors come in and socialize with other seniors. About one hundred seniors come into Speak-out every Monday to socialize, and enjoy free meals as well as hear useful information from carefully chosen guests. Guests such as the Manhattan Borough President, Health Care Officials, even guests providing information on products that are very useful to the visually impaired.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I've been working at Visions for a little over a year now and I must admit that my ability to work with others and my ability to underdstand others has improved. Visions offers many programs and events to aid the blind from dance classes to small trips. Visions has definitely opened my eyes to a world in which I would have never known existed.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I worked with VISIONS for two summers and it really did change my life. The seniors who I worked with all had different and inspiring stories who I learned from everyday. I felt very grateful for the opportunity to help them in any way I could. I also appreciated how VISIONS really did respond to each senior uniquely. They knew who they were and what they needed. They weren't just a number but a person who mattered. Working with VISIONS was a great experience for me since I was able to bond with my co workers and seniors.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with VISIONS has been an amazing experience. Meeting with several senior clientèle, I have really expanded my perspective of NYC's visually impaired community. Over the course of four months, I've developed many close bonds not only with my seniors, but with other volunteers!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been working with visions for a year now and I must say that this past year has really changed the way that i look at others who are different from me. I am really thankful that i was given the chance to work with the seniors because they have really grown on me. I like the fact that I am able to make a difference in peoples lives by just visiting someone and having a friendly conversation with them.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This program has encouraged me to work with people of all age groups in a patient and understanding way. I am very greatful to have found this program. The clients I work with are very pleased and satisfied with our services. They have helped me mature and care for others that are in need of help and support.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Vision services for the blind has been a great experience for me. I enjoy helping people who need it most. It has made me become a skilled individiual over the past 4years. The service has many programs to offer for the blind and visually impaired to make them feel wanted because other programs dispreciated them and they are humans no one should feel like that over something that can not be crontrolled. When many of them lost their vision some felt as if their life was destroyed and became immediately depressed, but visons is a place where they can regain their strength and power back. Let them live and enjoy their life the program is and makes them feel special. Iam more than overwhelmed to be apart of visions.