Seeing with our hearts


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Imagine what it might be like to adapt to life changed by vision loss. Learn how the Alaska Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired breaks the link between vision loss and unemployment that can spiral into poverty.

Aren’t we fortunate as Alaskans to be able to plan on a Permanent Fund Dividend check again this year? Yes, distribution begins this week and I know we all are waiting anxiously for them. Consider donating a portion of your dividend to the Center for the Blind or your local Lions club, who are ambassadors to the blind.

The annual Seeing With Our Hearts luncheon is set for Thursday, Oct. 10 at the Hotel Captain Cook in Anchorage.

You can double your gift this year if you decide to help the 13,000 Alaskans whose lives have been disrupted by low vision or blindness. Each year, Lions Clubs around the state pledge donations to the Center for the Blind. Lions truly are Knights of the Blind, as Helen Keller inspired them to be.

One client who lost much of her eyesight abruptly after a stroke told us, “The training I received from the Alaska Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired helped give me the strength to move on with my life and to understand there are no limitations to what I can do.”

At the Center’s Anchorage facility and in homes and communities statewide, they offer low vision clinics, training in new ways to do things when people can no longer depend on their sight and employment services. They teach Alaskans how to access computers using audible or enlarging software, read braille, travel independently with a white cane and manage daily life. With help from the Mat-Su Health Foundation, they now have a staff member in the Valley.

Every dollar donated goes directly to the charities. We hope this program will inspire you to consider a donation, but as much as anything, it is our goal for you to know and share our vision.

Learn more about the Alaska Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired at www.alaskabvi.org or facebook.com/alaskabvi. Or use Pick.Click.Give as an opportunity to involve your children in learning to give. Explore charities with them at www.pickclickgive.org.

You can find more activities of Alaska Lions at www.49A-Lions.org.

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