MAKING SENSE – June 2018

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

Honoring Our Volunteers of the Year
Vision Exchange Conference
Customizing VoiceOver
Let’s Play Scrabble in Braille
All About Sports at Apple Exchange
RP Meet Up
1Touch™ Beginner Class
July Advanced Computer Training
Parts for your Victor Reader Stream
Gamer’s Delight
Access Chicago 2018
Questions About Clinical Trials
Have Some Fun Bowling
Music Translator
Ride Sharing and Service Animals

Honoring Our Volunteers of the Year

We are very fortunate at Second Sense to have so many dedicated volunteers, many who help our clients in their journey to be independent with vision loss. Other volunteers support our staff with their administrative skills and this contribution allows our staff more time to provide the vital training for our clients. This year at our annual Volunteer Appreciation celebration, our staff nominated two volunteers of the year – Gina Falvo for her long-time commitment to Second Sense and her work leading our knitting and crochet group. Mike Magliane, Microsoft Excel whiz, for revamping the process of reporting accurate and comprehensive outcomes to our funders. Both of these volunteers have provided invaluable service to Second Sense and we honor them for their contributions. Our staff also wants to thank all of our dedicated volunteers for making Second Sense the special place it is!

Vision Exchange Conference

We invite all of our support group leaders to join us on Friday, June 1 from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm at Friedman Place, 5527 N. Maplewood Ave., Chicago for our annual Vision Exchange conference. This year we are focusing on transitions and how to support your group members who may be dealing with decreasing vision. You’ll also learn about Friedman Place, a supportive living facility for people with vision loss during a tour from Social Work Supervisor, Christian Zapata, LCSW. And, of course, there is always time for open discussion so everyone can share challenges, successes and ideas. CEUs are available through Prairie State College (see our website for more details on CEUs). Cost to attend Vision Exchange is $10 and includes refreshments and lunch. To register, email Polly Abbott or call 312-236-8569.

Customizing VoiceOver

Apple’s VoiceOver screen reader has many features you can customize to make using your iPhone a more pleasurable and efficient experience. Join David Flament for our new workshop, Apple: VoiceOver, on Thursday, June 14 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. You’ll learn how to use the rotor and pronunciation dictionary, label unidentified objects and change languages. To register, call our front desk or email David Flament.

Let’s Play Scrabble in Braille

A fun way to practice your braille skills is to play letter games. At our June classes in our Year of Braille, we’ll be playing Scrabble and working on crossword puzzle and word search puzzles! Join us on Fridays, June 8 and 22 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm to get in the extra practice and have some fun, too! To get the most from this session, you should know the braille alphabet. If you are unsure if you are ready for this class, call Polly Abbott at 312-236-8569 or email Polly Abbott.

It’s All About Sports at Apple Exchange

Our June Apple Exchange is a must if you are a sports fan! Learn how to follow your favorite team, find the best sports news and get those up to the minute updates! If you have a favorite sports site or app, please share it with the group. If you cannot make the meeting in person, our conference call-in line is available. Dial 312-582-2994, conference bridge 301 and pin 1111. To register for Apple Exchange, call our front desk or email David Flament.

RP Meet Up

Our next RP Meet Up is Saturday, June 9 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. If you have an inherited retinal condition or other related condition, you are welcome to attend to share experiences, concerns, support and a few laughs. Can’t make it in person? Call in on our conference call-in line at 312-582-2994, conference bridge 301, pin 1111. There will be no July meeting. To register, call our front desk or email Polly Abbott.

1Touch™ Beginner Class

Have you heard about our 1Touch™ Self-Defense classes at Second Sense? 1Touch is a great way to feel more confident when traveling out and about. You learn moves to counteract the person who insists on helping you when help is not needed and more serious moves to protect yourself in a dangerous situation. In addition, 1Touch helps you with your spatial orientation, dexterity and overall mobility. Our next 12-week beginner class starts Tuesday, July 10 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm with Rachael Eschbach as your instructor. To register, call our front desk or email Rachael Eschbach.

July Advanced Computer Training

For those of you who are looking for more advanced computer instruction for Microsoft products, David Flament is offering Advanced Word and Excel classes on Saturday, July 14. The Advanced Word class, from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm, shows you how to use styles and sections and how to create a mail merge or table. The Excel class, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm, provides strategies for organizing your data before you begin and ways to filter, select and sort your data. You should be comfortable with your assistive technology to participate in these classes. To register for either or both of these classes, call our front desk or email David Flament.

Need Parts for Your Victor Reader Stream?

It happens. We lose our charger or the battery finally gives out. What to do? Call Brian at Second Sense and he can help you get the replacement parts for your Second Generation Victor Reader Stream. USB cables, batteries and chargers can be shipped directly to you. Call 312-236-8569 or email Brian Hollandsworth to order your accessory.

Gamer’s Delight

If you love to play video games but have given up because of your vision loss, check this out! A Hero’s Call is a new 3D audio, role-playing game (RPG) that David Flament highly recommends. The game is designed to play on your PC (no smart phone version available) with headphones. Sounds come from all directions as you explore new lands, complete quests and combat foes. The game is produced by Out of Sight Games and costs $20. Check out David’s Second Opinions blog post on our website for all the details. Happy gaming!

Access Chicago 2018

The Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities is sponsoring Access Chicago at Navy Pier on Thursday, July 19 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. This is a perfect opportunity to learn about new or existing services for people with disabilities and participate in fun activities like cooking, fishing, bowling and other adaptive sports. Art therapy workshops, musical performances and health screenings are also a part of this exciting, free event. To learn more, call 312-746-5773.

Questions About Clinical Trials

It is an exciting time for research into curing vision loss due to conditions like macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. Hearing news that a clinical trial has been successful provides hope to many, and perhaps you want to participate in the research. The Bright Focus Foundation has prepared a comprehensive document, Clinical Trials: Your Questions Answered, providing a wealth of information relating to your participation. Questions about how clinical trials work, where to learn about available clinical trials and what to consider before participating, are answered. To download a copy, visit the website.

Have Some Fun Bowling

Did you know there are six bowling leagues for people with vision loss in Chicago? Robert McDonald is with the Peace Breakers League that bowls at Bluebird Lanes, 3900 W. Columbus, Chicago on Sunday evenings at 6:00 pm. Robert invites you to call to learn how you can be a part of the American Blind Bowling Association, have some fun with fellow bowlers and get a little exercise too! Call 773-255-3121 or email Robert to learn more.

Music Translator

The Danish Institute for the Blind and Partially Sighted has designed a new software program that translates XML music files into braille music notation or text. These music scores can then be accessed with a refreshable braille display, screen reader on a computer or foot switches. Now musicians with vision loss can access music scores just like their sighted peers with the IBOS Music XML Reader! Musicians can select a specific part or instrument of a score; and navigate by measure, note or specific point in the piece. To learn more and to download the software, visit the website.

Ride Sharing and Service Animals

The National Federation of the Blind is continuing to gather data on ride sharing companies Uber and Lyft and the service provided to those who use service animals. Whether you have had a positive or negative experience, you are urged to complete NFB’s survey. In addition, NFB offers these suggestions when traveling with a service animal. First, Notify your driver via text, phone or in person that you are traveling with a service animal, not a pet. Second, if you make a complaint, let Uber or Lyft know your driver was aware you were traveling with a service animal. Next, if there was a witness to the discrimination, if possible, provide contact information for this person in your complaint. Last, no matter if you were denied service, treated disrespectfully or charged a cleaning fee for your service animal, these are all forms of discrimination and need to be reported to Uber or Lyft and also to the NFB survey. To report a critical safety concern for an Uber trip, call 800-285-9481.