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Making Sense: February 2020

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

Please note: Screen reader users can use the quick key letter “H” to navigate article by article. You can also use your screen readers’ headings list keystroke for a list of article topics.

Join our workshops (where noted) by calling in on our conference line. Dial 312-582-2994, conference bridge 301 and pin 1111#.

CONTENTS

New Podcast Club!
Vision Exchange Conference Call
Your Internet Browser
Bring Your Questions to RP Meet Up
Your Personal Safety
Your iPhone Can Do So Much More!
1Touch Special Session
Great News for Live Theatre
Chicago Guide Dog Group
Looking Forward to March
Are You an Opera Lover?
Navigating Healthcare
Navigator Program at Friedman Place
February Audio Described Live Theatre!
Holman Prize for Blind Ambition
Getting Ready for the 2020 Census

New Podcast Club!

Venture into the world of podcasts with our new Podcast Club at Second Sense! This is an awesome opportunity to learn something new or to find a new source of entertainment to enjoy. And it’s all accomplished in one accessible, bite-size afternoon. Similar to a book club, we’ll listen to a podcast and afterwards discuss the piece. We’ll be exploring new podcasts and taking suggestions for the next meeting. Even if you are not yet comfortable with using a podcast app, come join us to listen and be a part of the conversation. Our first podcast is entitled Hearing in a Deafening World, an interview with David Owen, author of Volume Control that recently aired on NPR’s Fresh Air. We’ll be meeting on the second Friday of every month from 1:00 to 2:30 pm. First meeting is Feb. 14. Conference call is available. To register, call our front desk or email Kathy Austin.

Vision Exchange Conference Call

Support group leaders are invited to join us for our quarterly Vision Exchange conference call. On Tuesday, Feb. 4 from 12:15 to 1:00 pm, it’s your Favorite Resource Swap Shop! Where do you turn to when you need information on eye conditions, research or treatments? Do you have a resource for accessible technology or gadgets for the home? What about recreational or leisure activities? Bring your “go-to” website, organization or publication to share with the group. National resources will be most helpful as not everyone is in the Chicago area. Call in number is 312-582-2994, conference bridge 301 an dpin 1111#. To register, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Your Internet Browser

Many of us have been using Microsoft’s Internet Explorer for years, but soon, Microsoft will no longer support this browser. At our new Internet Browser workshop on Thursday, Feb. 27 from 1:00 to 2:30 pm, we’ll discuss why it is important to choose a different web browser, the differences between Internet Explorer and Google Chrome and how to make the change to a new browser. This is a hands-on workshop. To register, call our front desk or email Joseph Lee.

Bring Your Questions to RP Meet Up

Our general discussions at RP Meet Ups have been a lively mix of questions and tips to help those living with RP and related conditions. These discussions can help you feel more in control of your life. At our Saturday, Feb. 8 meet up, we ask you to bring one question that relates to living with vision loss. Don’t have a question? We bet you have a resource or tip to share! We meet from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Conference call in is available. To register, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Your Personal Safety

Anyone can be a victim of crime, but you can avoid being a target by learning some specific skills. On Wednesday, Feb. 12 from 1:00 to 2:30 pm, we welcome Ed Haines from the Hadley Institute for the Blind and Visually Impaired as he shares techniques from his personal safety course for our Personal Safety: Self-Defense Strategies workshop. We’ll discuss ways of being aware of your surroundings, setting boundaries and tuning into your intuition. Conference call is available. To register for this essential safety course, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Your iPhone Can Do So Much More!

At our Thursday, Feb. 6 Apple Exchange, we’re talking about all the other things your iPhone can do for you. We’ll look into a number of apps that can increase your independence, walk you through their use and answer your questions. If you have an app you use that you find invaluable in your daily life, please share! Conference call is available. To register, call our front desk or email Joseph Lee.

1Touch Special Session

This 1 Touch is a special session open to past participants of our 1Touch beginner and intermediate course. If you ride public transit, this half day workshop will be of special interest to you. We’ll be adapting familiar 1Touch techniques to use if you are sitting down. To register for this session on Thursday, Feb. 27 from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

Great News for Live Theatre

Now you can listen to the audio description at a live theatre performance without the trouble of going to customer service for the headset! Join Martin Wild, live audio describer and co-creator of the AccessLive app at Second Sense on Wednesday, March 11 from 10:30 to 12:00 pm. AccessLive is a new iOS app that delivers audio description and assistive listening services over Wi-Fi to your iPhone or iPad. All you need to do is download the app and bring your own device and wired headphones to a performance. When you get to the theatre, connect to the theatre’s Wi-Fi (no Internet connection necessary), fire up the app and listen to a high-quality, stereo audio stream. No more stopping at customer service and no more static in the feed. You can sit where ever you want and be comfortable using your own device. It’s VoiceOver compatible, too. For the best user experience, download the app on your iPhone or iPad prior to the workshop. To register and for questions, call our front desk or email Kathy Austin.

Chicago Guide Dog Group

Join the Chicago Guide Dog Group at Second Sense on Saturday, Feb. 8 from 10:00 to 11:30 am. Toni Eames, one of the original founders of the nonprofit, International Association of Assistance Dog Partners (IAADP), and an experienced guide dog handler, is the guest speaker. Toni brings a wealth of knowledge about advocacy for people who use all types of assistance dogs. IAADP is dedicated to providing a voice for handlers who use assistance dogs, to work together on issues of mutual concern and to foster the partnership between handlers and assistance dogs. To register, contact Pam Berman at 773-671-6624 or email Pam Berman.

Looking Forward to March

We have some new offerings and some old favorites coming in March. Survival Sewing begins Wednesday, March 4 and meets for four weeks. Learn the basics of hemming, sewing on buttons and making simple repairs. Marilyn Green, certified yoga instructor, returns on March 25 with our Wednesday morning yoga class to help you relieve stress and improve your flexibility and strength. For those who have participated in our beginner or intermediate 1Touch™ self-defense courses, we’ll have a fun warm-up session to practice locks and releases. This special 1Touch class meets On Thursday, March 19. As always, there’s Apple Exchange, RP Meet Up and our new Podcast Club that meet monthly. Check our Second Sense website calendar for more details, dates and times.

Are You an Opera Lover?

An extremely generous donor has provided Second Sense with a limited number of tickets for the 7:30 pm Friday, Feb. 14 performance of Freedom Ride at the Studebaker Theatre. This audio described performance, commissioned by the Chicago Opera Theatre is accompanied by the Chicago Sinfonietta, and a part of Chicago Theatre Week. The opera depicts the story of Sylvie Davenport and the Freedom Rides of 1961. Freedom Rides, organized by the Congress on Racial Equality, were groups of black and white civil rights activists who participated in bus trips through the American south to protest the segregation of bus terminals. We request these tickets be used by individuals with vision loss and a companion. Please make sure you are able to use the tickets before requesting. First come, first serve. To learn more and to request tickets, please contact Kathy Austin at 312-236-8569 or email Kathy Austin.

Navigating Healthcare

Have you ever been discouraged that your healthcare professional has no idea of how to treat you? Often times these professionals make incorrect assumptions about your abilities and the help you may or may not need. National Braille Press has a new book, Navigating Healthcare When all They Can See is That You Can’t, by Deborah Kendrick. The book discusses a wide variety of healthcare scenarios including office visits, hospital stays, out-patient surgeries, guide dogs and emergencies. Using technology for researching your doctor, using patient portals and looking at the vast array of accessible equipment is also covered. This book is not about medical insurance or choosing a health insurance plan, but how to effectively advocate and use the tools at your disposal to make your healthcare services work for you. The book is available for preorder in braille, DAISY, eBraille and Word via download or USB. Visit www.NBP.org to place your order.

Navigator Program at Friedman Place

Life sometimes throws you a challenge and you’re not sure where to turn. Friedman Place’s new Navigator program is now available to those 18 years and older with vision loss who live in the community. The Navigator staff member can help you connect with essential resources to meet these challenges and maximize your independence. The program connects you with public programs like transportation services and Social Security. Educational, vocational, healthcare and housing resources are also provided. To apply, complete this online application or visit the Friedman Place website.

February Audio Described Live Theatre!

On Saturday, Feb. 15, the Goodman Theatre is performing Roe, the story of the two women behind the Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion, Roe v. Wade, and the passions held on both sides of this hotly debated issue. Touch tour is at 12:230 pm and curtain at 2:00 pm. Call the box office at 312-443-3800 or email access@goodmantheatre.org for tickets. Victory Gardens is offering a limited number of free tickets to the Sunday, Feb. 16 performance of How to Defend Yourself with a touch tour at 1:30 pm and curtain at 3:00 pm. The play circles around seven college students for a DIY self-defense workshop after a fellow classmate is sexually assaulted. Their venture into self-defense becomes a channel for their rage, trauma and desire. Content warning: This play has adult content with descriptions of sexual violence, explicit language and intense discussion of sex. To claim free tickets, fill out this form or call Becca Brown at 773-328-2130. Limit two tickets per person.

Holman Prize for Blind Ambition

Do you have a big idea but lack the resources to make it a reality? The Holman Prize for Blind Ambition may be your answer! The San Francisco Lighthouse sponsors the Holman Prize, an international competition that awards up to $25,000 to three visually impaired individuals to pursue their dream or adventure. All it takes is a short application and a 90 second video to pitch your idea. Deadline for applications is March 15. To learn more, visit the Holman Prize website.

Getting Ready for the 2020 Census

Every 10 years, our country’s Constitution requires that we count everyone. During March, you’ll be receiving a letter from the Census Bureau asking for information about everyone living in your household. It is imperative, especially for our community, that you respond to the Census. Programs that we rely on like healthcare, accessible transportation, food subsidies and even the funding for vision rehabilitation services you receive from Second Sense, are at risk if our community is undercounted. Between March 12 and 20, you will receive a letter in the mail in a black and white envelope from the Census. You can respond to the nine questions in three ways: online, on paper or by phone. While some of these response methods may be difficult for many people with vision loss, Second Sense will be offering assistance for filling out your questionnaire online in late March and April. Dates for getting assistance will be published in our March Making Sense newsletter, Facebook, Twitter and on our overnight phone message. Please know that Census information gathered is held with the utmost confidentiality and is not released to any third parties. Everyone must be counted regardless of citizenship, ages or legal status. Please watch for your Census letter and if you have questions or need assistance, please contact our front desk or email Kathy Austin.