MAKING SENSE: October 2016

Making 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

MS Outlook and PowerPoint Classes
Does This Product Really Work?
What’s Going On at Our Meet Ups?
2017 Calendars are In!
Personal Safety Workshop
Entertaining Reading
Looking for Something To Do?
Columbus Day
Talking Playing Cards
Midway Airport Dog Relieving Area
Transition to Work Guide
New Support Group in Zion
Dare 2 Tri
Free Braille Music
Ability Links Virtual Job Fair
Get Involved!

MS Outlook and PowerPoint Classes

Expand your computer skills by attending one or both of these computer classes on Saturday, Oct. 8.  At 10:00 am, you’ll learn the basics for organizing your contacts, sending emails and creating appointments in MS Outlook.  At 1:00 pm, you’ll learn your way around MS PowerPoint so you can create a memorable presentation with themes, transitions and animations.  To register for either of these classes, call our front desk or email David Flament.

Does This Product Really Work?

Do you have lots of gadgets that just didn’t quite cut muster?  There’s nothing worse than a drawer full of stuff you don’t use! Brian Hollandsworth, coordinator of our Product Center, is going to sort through the maze of products and let you know what product is worth the money and what isn’t.  If you are having trouble finding the right tool for the job, Brian can help you find a solution. Come join us on Monday, Oct. 24 from 1:00 to 2:30 pm!  To register, call our front desk or email Brian Hollandsworth.

What’s Going On at Our Meet Ups?

If you’d like to connect with others for some friendly conversation or informative presentations, our RP and VIP Meet Ups are the places to find it!  Our VIP Meet Up on Saturday, Oct. 8 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm features a representative from the American Blind Skiing Foundation to talk about all of the skiing and recreational activities you can become a part of with ABSF.  Don’t forget that our RP Meet Up has been moved to the last Friday of the month from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.  This month’s RP gathering is Oct. 28.  To learn more, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

2017 Calendars are In!

The accessible 2017 calendars have arrived in our Second Sense Product Center.  Choose from a large print wall calendar, large print spiral bound date book or pocket braille calendar.  Place your orders with Brian while supplies last!  Call 312-236-8569 or email Brian Hollandsworth.

Personal Safety Workshop

Crime is a fact of life.  A person with vision loss, like anyone else, can be a potential victim.  You can maintain your personal safety and avoid becoming a target by developing specific skills and behaviors that will increase your safety.  Join us as we welcome Ed Haines, instructor at the Hadley Institute for the Blind and Visually Impaired, on Saturday, Nov. 12 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm.  Ed shares techniques from his Personal Safety course at Hadley that will help minimize your exposure to threatening situations.  To register, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Entertaining Reading

Have you checked out Jalapenos in the Oatmeal on our website?  This Blog is penned by Jeff Flodin whose stories have been published in the Chicago Tribune and Rockford Review.  Jeff writes passionately about the ups and downs of living with RP.  His posts are sometimes hilarious – the antics of a guide dog – and sometimes poignant – thoughtful consideration of disability as an identity.  You’ll find the link to Jalapenos in the Oatmeal on our home page.  Take a few moments to subscribe and read Jeff’s posts – you’ll be glad you did!

Looking for Something To Do?

Sometimes when vision is failing, the pleasure you got from your favorite activities isn’t quite so much fun anymore.  This lack of enjoyment may cause you to stay home because you feel it just isn’t worth it.  Have heart!  To help you get back in the groove of enjoying recreational activities, Second Sense has a handout with a wide variety of activities that have been adapted in some way to enhance the experience for someone with vision loss.  The list includes sports, theatre, gardens, museums and much more.  This large print handout can be emailed or snail mailed to you.  Call our front desk or email Kathy Austin to get your copy today!

Columbus Day

Second Sense will be closed for Columbus Day on Monday, Oct. 10.  You can leave a message in our general voicemail box and we’ll return your call on Tuesday.

Talking Playing Cards

If you miss playing cards with friends and family because of your vision loss, why not try the new Talking Playing Cards from the Blind Mice Mega Mall.  Each standard deck of cards has a special code on the back that is visible only to the free Cards That Talk app from Apple’s App Store.  When a card is scanned with the app on your Apple device, the value of the card is announced to you.  Use earbuds for privacy!  Find the cards at Blind Mice Mega Mall or call 713-893-7277.  Find the Cards That Talk app in the App Store.

New Midway Airport Service Dog Relieving Area

Midway International Airport now offers an indoor service animal relieving area located inside the security checkpoint at Concourse A near Gate 4.  The facility has artificial grass, imitation fire hydrants, pick up bags, flushing spray system and a sink for handlers.  The indoor relieving area provides handlers a way to relieve their dogs without having to go outside and back through security.  This relieving area was installed in compliance with a federal mandate to have designated areas inside security checkpoints in all U.S. airports.  Midway now joins O’Hare International Airport that installed a similar facility in October of 2015.  O’Hare’s service animal relieving area is located past the security checkpoint in the rotunda area of Terminal 3.

Transition to Work Guide for Teachers and Professionals

The American Foundation of the Blind Career Connect has developed a new guide to help teachers and professionals implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).  WIOA requires states to reserve funds to provide youth with vision loss pre-employment transition services.  The Transition to Work Program Activity Guide contains free lesson plans and assignments on topics like researching and applying for employment, completing job applications, preparing an elevator speech and developing a personal marketing message.  Get the free guide at AFB and click on the Career connect link.  The guide is also available as a UEB braille file ready for embossing.

New Support Group in Zion

Do you live in or around Zion, Illinois?  Are you looking for a support group for people with vision loss?  Residents of Zion, Winthrop Harbor and Beach Park are coming together for the first time on Monday, Oct. 3 at the Benton Public Library from 6:15 to 7:30 pm.  The group will be sharing information and ideas and helping to support one another.  The library is located at 2400 Gabriel Avenue in Zion, IL 60099.  To learn more, email Barbara.

Dare 2 Tri

Would you really like to challenge yourself and start training for a para triathlon?  Dare 2 Tri is committed to helping individuals with disabilities by developing their skills in para triathlon.  The Dare 2 Tri Para Triathlon Club offers a wide variety of activities to help you prepare, including open water swimming, tandem cycling and sighted guide running.  During the winter months, indoor swimming, circuit training and yoga are offered to build stamina.  Locations vary according to the type of activity.  To learn more, visit Dare 2 Tri.

Free Braille Music

The National Library Service is giving away braille music scores for free!  These materials have been given to the library service over the years and are duplicate titles already held in their collection.  The music scores are free for the asking on a first come, first serve basis.  They will be sent via free matter for the blind to anyone – even those who may not qualify for NLS services including people living overseas or who are not U.S. citizens.  To find the list of available titles and to learn more, visit the Library of Congress and enter “free braille music scores” in the search box, then sort the list by date for the most recent information.

Ability Links Virtual Job Fair

Ability Links is a nationwide web community connecting qualified job seekers with disabilities to employers who provide an inclusive work environment.  On Wednesday, Oct. 12, Ability Links is holding a virtual job fair to celebrate Disability Employment Awareness month.  By registering as a job seeker with a disability, you have access to company profiles and job opportunities.  You can chat online or by telephone with recruiters and disability employment experts.  Job applications can be submitted online.  To register for this virtual job fair, visit Ability Links.

Get Involved!

Build your network and connections in the blindness community by joining one of the Chicago chapters of the American Council of the Blind (ACB) or the National Federation of the Blind (NFB).  This is a great way to learn about the latest innovations, technology, recreation and advocacy issues for people with vision loss.  Both organizations are nation-wide with numerous chapters, excellent resources and exciting programs.  Chicago and suburban residents can attend an ACB Metropolitan Chicago meeting on the third Saturday of the month at Blind Service Association, 17 N. State Street in Chicago.  Katie Howe, chapter president, can be reached at 708-489-5169.  The Chicago chapter of the NFB meets on the second Saturday of the month at Exchequer Pub, 226 S. Wabash, Chicago.  Debbie Kent-Stein is the chapter president.  To learn more about the mission and vision of each of these organizations, visit ACB or NFB.