Lisa Crosson gave a very informative talk about the work of Helen Keller Services for the Blind at our regular meeting on Wednesday, January 23rd.
 Co-President Charlie introduced our guest speaker, Lisa Crosson from Helen Keller Services for he Blind (HKSB).
HKSB is one of the oldest, continuously operated, not-for-profit rehabilitation agencies in the United States, providing unparalleled resources for blind, visually impaired and developmentally disabled people, giving them the tools to achieve their goals during every phase of their lives.
Their services include training in orientation and mobility, assistive technology and daily living skills, low vision eye care, employment/placement services, and programs designed specifically for children and senior citizens.
Lisa, a Vision Rehabilitation Therapist and Orientation & Mobility Specialist with HKSB, gave a very informative talk on the services she, and other instructors, provide for blind and visually handicapped people throughout Long Island.
Lisa defined legal blindness, the condition that qualifies folks for HKSB’s free services. She also described the most prominent eye diseases resulting in blindness.
Instructors such as Lisa visit visually impaired client’s homes, providing assistive devices/materials, in-depth advice and guidance on everything from dialing a telephone, writing a check, and pouring a cup of coffee to operating household appliances and navigating floor plans and stairways. The scope of their instruction is dictated by whatever help the client needs.
Instruction also carries to navigating outdoors, dealing with traffic, and using public and SCAT (Suffolk County Accessible Transit) transportation.
HKSB also offers a wide variety of programs covering assistive technology training, social casework and employment services, as well as a number of specialized programs for seniors, children and young adults.
Lisa concluded with a lively Q&A session, emphasizing the need to get the word out about the services they offer. HKSB suffers from a similar PR problem as does Rotary: despite a century-long history of providing vital humanitarian service to hundreds of thousands of people, few know about them. All members are encouraged the help pass the word about this valuable resource right here on Long Island.
Lisa is shown above with Babylon Rotary members Wayne Horsley, Gus Fishel, and Co-President Charlie Spencer.