Making Sense: June 2016

5Making Sense is made possible in part from donations by our readers. Second Sense thanks Horizons for the Blind for the braille transcriptions of Making Sense.

These articles are not an endorsement by Second Sense. Editor: Kathy Austin

CONTENTS

Southland Vision Solutions Expo
Apple Exchange: GPS Apps
Windows XP, 7 to 10
More Than Just an Elbow
The Net and Other Resources
Monday Afternoon Discussion
Lighting and Low Vision
Knitting Group Continues
Hearty Congratulations
Meet Up Groups
No Boundaries
Get Fit
Uber and Guide Dogs
Retreat for Women with Vision Loss
Windows 10 and Free Upgrade

Southland Vision Solutions Expo

If you have vision loss and live in the south suburbs, you won’t want to miss Southland Vision Solutions Expo on Saturday, June 18!  Second Sense, in partnership with Vision Rehab, Inc. of Olympia Fields, is hosting Southland Vision Solutions to share with you important information about minimizing potential damaging effects from lighting, getting the most from your magnification devices and finding the right products for your independence.  Our “Doctor Is In” presentation answers your questions about research, treatments and what you can do to preserve vision.  Exhibitors are on hand to share valuable resources that can make a difference in your life.  Doors open at 9:00 am at the Marie Irwin Community Center, 18120 Highland Avenue in Homewood.  To register and learn more, email Kathy Austin or call 312-236-8569.

Apple Exchange

Getting where you want to go has become much easier with the many GPS apps now available for your Apple device.  But which one is best for the traveler with vision loss?  At our June 2 Apple Exchange from 1:30 to 3:30 pm, we’ll be checking out several apps and pointing out their differences to help you find one that meets your needs.  We’ll compare features, costs and all the unique and cool things these apps can do.  You’ll also learn the basics of investigating, planning and following routes and setting points of interest.  To register for Apple Exchange, call our front desk or email David Flament.  

Windows XP, 7 to 10

Back by popular demand!  You’ll be ready to make the transition to Windows 10 if you attend this important workshop.  David Flament walks you through how to use the start menu, manage files and folders, find common settings and so much more!  To register for Windows XP, 7 to 10 on Saturday, June 11 from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm, call our front desk or email David Flament.

More Than Just an Elbow

Traveling with a human guide can be easier and safer when you learn the proper techniques for traveling as a team.  Designed for a person with vision loss and their intended guide, you’ll learn how to gracefully handle curbs, stairs and doorways.  You’ll also learn how to use body cues for stopping and starting and how best to communicate about the environment you’re traveling.  Space is limited for this active class on Saturday, June 25 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.  To register, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.  

The Net and Other Resources

Have you ever found yourself stuck on a technology problem and not know where to turn to solve it?  We can help!  In our new workshop, The Net and Other Resources, we’ll show you how to search the web to find exactly what you need, build your knowledge with the best podcasts and discover the websites with the best information.  Bring your Victor Reader Stream to capture all these great tools!  To register for the Net and Other Resources on Saturday, June 25 from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, call our front desk or email David Flament.

Monday Afternoon Discussion

On Monday, June 27 from 1:00 to 2:30 pm we welcome two of our Second Sense volunteers to share their experiences belonging to well-known membership organizations. Maureen Heneghan with the Metropolitan Chicago Chapter of the American Council of the Blind and Gina Falvo with the Chicago Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind share their personal stories of what being an active participant in their respective organization has meant to them.  This is a great opportunity to discover how being involved with any organization can bring you a sense of purpose and belonging.  Everyone is welcome, just stop by!

Lighting and Low Vision

Buying a light bulb these days can be confusing due to the changes in energy efficiency requirements implemented by the federal government.  But did you know you should be cautious about the type of bulb you purchase?  Our new Lighting and Low Vision workshop on Saturday, July 9 from 10:30 to 11:30 am will help you learn the best type of lighting to use to enhance your vision and protect your eyes.  To register for this new workshop, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Knitting Group Continues

Our Wednesday morning knitting group, under the helpful guidance of our volunteer, Gina Falvo, will continue throughout the summer.  If you need help with a project, would like to get started on one, or are just learning, you’re welcome to join the group.  Knitting group meets every Wednesday from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm.  To learn more and to register, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Hearty Congratulations!

At our annual Volunteer Appreciation party held on April 28, Shawn Sturges was honored as Second Sense’s Volunteer of the Year.  Many of you may know Shawn as one of our technology tutors.  In addition to his volunteer role at Second Sense, Shawn is the General Manager of Genesis X Fitness and Social Media Manager for Sassy B Worldwide Productions.  Shawn has participated in the martial art of Kyokushin, likes to wakeboard, sky dive and recently has taken up rock climbing!  Shawn has been a terrific role model for our clients and is an inspiration to all of us.  Congratulations, Shawn, and thanks so much for all you do for Second Sense.

Meet Up Groups

Please note that effective this July, our RP Meet Up group moves to the last Friday of the month from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.  Our VIP Meet Up will continue to meet on the second Saturday of the month from 1:00 to 3:00 pm.  If anyone from the RP group can’t make the Friday time, you’re welcome to join us at the Saturday VIP meeting.  For more information, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

No Boundaries

No Boundaries is designed for motivated adults with disabilities transitioning from high school to the workplace.  The program provides structured classroom instruction and experiential learning to prepare individuals for success in the workplace and community.  No Boundaries is located in Evanston, Illinois and the summer session begins June 13.  To learn more, call 847-869-0000 or email Laurie Finnegan.

Get Fit!

If you find your local fitness center is not providing the type of extra support you may need to achieve your fitness goals, Genesis X Fitness may be what you’re looking for! Toby Sturges, who also has vision loss, is a certified fitness professional who adapts exercise programs to meet the client’s specific needs.  An initial consultation includes an exercise and health history, action plan to meet goals, nutrition overview and a run through of a workout to assess your abilities.  Training can be provided for corrective posture and rehabilitation, metabolic equivalency, cardio and resistance.  Budget plans are available.  Genesis X Fitness is located at 230 W. Huron, Chicago.  To learn more, call 312-478-1770 or email genesis@genesisxfitness.com

Uber and Guide Dogs

If you have been afraid of using the Uber app as a transportation option with your guide dog, you will be pleased to know that Uber has agreed to take affirmative steps to insure their drivers are aware of their responsibility to transport you and your guide.  In a landmark settlement, Uber and the National Federation of the Blind of California, et al., reached an agreement where Uber will require all drivers to expressly confirm their legal responsibility to transport individuals with service animals.  In addition, Uber will remove a driver after only one complaint if the driver knowingly denied service.  Uber has promised to be more responsive to denials of service and track detailed information about discrimination complaints with service animals.  If you have a problem with an Uber driver denying service to you and your guide, make sure to notify Uber.  You can do this by tapping on the account menu button, then tapping the help button on the next screen.

Retreat for Women with Vision Loss

Becky Andrews, LCMHC with retinitis pigmentosa and Nicole Wall, LCMHC and certified Daring Way facilitator, are holding the second Retreat for Women who are Blind/Visually Impaired this August in Salt Lake City, Utah.  This is an opportunity to connect with other women who are experiencing the unique challenges of living with vision loss.  Attendees will also participate in experiential activities from the Brene Brown Daring Way course, hikes and a chance to share stories.  Space is very limited.  To learn more, email Becky Andrews.

Windows 10 and Free Upgrade

Microsoft’s deadline of July 29 for the free upgrade to Windows 10 will not apply to those people who use adaptive technology, according to the Microsoft Accessibility blog.  The Windows 10 anniversary edition, an updated version of Windows 10, is coming out soon and promises new accessibility features including improvements to Narrator.  JAWS users may want to wait to upgrade until the new JAWS 18 comes out in October.  Second Sense recommends not upgrading to Windows 10 until we are sure your adaptive technology will work well with the newest Windows 10 edition.  The Microsoft Accessibility tech support line at 800-936-5900 can answer many accessibility questions and can help you upgrade when the time is right.