NATIONAL & STATE RESOURCES:
The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) offers many valuable programs
AND will provide a free white cane to anyone who uses or desires to use a
long, white cane to help them navigate their environment with confidence
and safety. For full details, visit
National Federation of the Blind NEWSLINE
200 East Wells at Jernigan Place
Baltimore, MD 21230
A FREE electronic service that gives any blind, visually impaired, or print-disabled person access
to newspapers, magazines, and TV listings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week using a touch-tone tele-
phone, on the Web or by download to a digital talking-book player or MP3-playing device. You can
listen to TODAY's newspaper over the telephone and gives access to up to 2 weeks of TV listings
in advance. You can choose the topic and articles of greatest interest to you, at the time and place
of your choosing There are over 300 newspapers and magazines to choose from!
American Foundation for the Blind
1401 South Clark Suite 730
Arlington, VA 22202
Since 1921, AFB has been a leader in expanding possibilities for the nearly 5 million Americans
living with vision loss. A national nonprofit, we champion access and equality, and stand at the
forefront of new technologies and evidence-based advocacy. We address the most pressing needs
of people with vision loss and their families, breaking down societal barriers and promoting broad systemic change. Like Helen Keller, AFB's most famous ambassador, we are committed to creating
a more equitable world for people with disabilities.
Michigan Services for Blind Persons (BSBP)
The Michigan Bureau of Services for Blind Persons (BSBP) believes in the capacity of people who
are blind or visually impaired to achieve employment and independence. BSBP provides training
and other services that empower people to achieve their individual goals. If you live in Michigan
and you're blind or visually impaired, the Bureau of Services for Blind Persons will work with you
to define your goals and identify appropriate training and other services. Funded by federal and
state taxes, BSBP provides counseling and training in skills for daily living without vision. Depen-
ding upon your needs and eligibility for specific services, BSBP may also provide some types of
adaptive equipment, computer software, and post- secondary education.
Michigan Commission for the Blind
3038 W Grand Blvd.
Detroit, MI 48202
This program has the primary responsibility for preparing legally blind men and women for gainful,
competitive employment. Program counselors work closely with each client in developing a rehab-
ilitation program that is suited to the client's interests, aptitudes and potential skills.
NOTE: MEDICAID WILL NOW PAY FOR EYE EXAMS & GLASSES
Medicaid will begin paying for one eye exam and one pair of glasses (if needed) every 2 years. You
MAY have a co-pay of 2.00. For information if you are on full Medicaid, call 800-642-3195. If you are
on one of the Health plans, call their Member Services number.
If you have diabetes, MEDICARE will help pay for eye exams! Diabetic eye disease can affect any-
one with diabetes, it often has no symptoms or pain and if undetected, can cause severe vision loss
If you are a person with diabetes, who has a family history of glaucoma, an African-American age
50 or older or a Hispanic age 65 or older.......Medicare will cover an eye exam to detect glaucoma
once every 12 months. Patients must pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount after the yearly
Part B deductible. Glaucoma often has no warning signs and if untreated, it can lead to vision loss.
Lions Club International
300 W. 22nd
Oak Brook, IL 60523-8842
The Lions Club helps the community by paying for eye exams, buying eyeglasses and hearing
aids, cataract services & surgery, etc.The Dept. of Otolaryngology at the Wayne State University
School of Medicine works with the Lions Hearing Center of S.E. Michigan to help defray the costs
of hearing aids. For info, call the hearing center at 313-745-4664 or go to www.lhcmi.org.
- Children and Youth Screenings
- Hearing Aid Assistance Programs
- Deaf Children and Their Parents Program
For information on the Lions Club in YOUR town:
Phone: 313-272-3900 Ext 65
Vision To Learn
12100 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 1275
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Michigan Office: Tressel Flaggs, Program Manager Eastern Michigan
Vision To Learn (VTL) partners with school districts through a Memorandum of Understanding
(MOU) that outlines the responsibilities of Vision To Learn and the district. Vision To Learn’s
program model makes it easy for students to access eye care, and easy for schools to bring
Vision To Learn to campus. Typical district responsibilities include coordinating consent forms
for exams and escorting kids from the classroom to the mobile clinic.The program begins with
vision screenings for all students, utilizing medically appropriate tools.
NEW EYES FOR THE NEEDY
549 Millburn Ave.
Short Hills, NJ 07078
New Eyes For The Needy purchases new prescription eyeglasses through a voucher program
for children & adults in the U.S. who cannot afford glasses on their own. New Eyes accepts,
recycles and distributes donated glasses for poor people overseas.
Health Emergency Lifeline Program (H.E.L.P.)
Detroit, MI 48216
Prescription eyeglasses are provided for eligible low-income clients who lack eyeglass insurance
coverage. Must have HIV/AIDS and/or Hepatitis C.
243 N. Lindbergh Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63141
Phone: 314-983-4286 Toll Free: 888-396-EYES (3937)
InfantSEE®, a public health program, managed by Optometry Cares® -The AOA Foundation,
is designed to ensure that eye and vision care becomes an essential part of infant wellness
care to improve a child's quality of life. Under this program, participating doctors of optometry
provide a comprehensive infant eye assessment between 6 and 12 months of age free of charge
regardless of family income or access to insurance coverage.
EYE CARE AMERICA
American Academy of Ophthalmology
San Francisco, CA 94109
P.O. Box 7424
San Francisco, CA 94120-7424
EyeCare America a public service foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology
(AAO). Provides comprehensive eye exams and care for up to one year, often at no out-of-
pocket expense to eligible to those 65 and older through its seniors and Diabetes EyeCare
Programs. Its Glaucoma EyeCare Program provides a glaucoma eye exam. The EyeCare
America Children’s EyeCare Program educates parents and primary care providers about
the importance of early childhood (newborn through 36 months of age) eye care.
Mission Cataract USA
1233 E. Brandywine
Fresno, CA 93720
Who is eligible for Mission Cataract USA?
The goal of Mission Cataract USA is to eradicate blindness due to cataracts in our country and
bring as many people as possible from blindness to useful productive lives. We hope to have
Mission Cataract surgeons in all 50 states so that no one in the United States will go without
needed cataract surgery due to finances We want to make sure every vision impaired person
in America without insurance or financial resources learns about this remarkable program.
VSP Eyes of Hope (formerly SIGHT FOR STUDENTS)
VSP GLOBAL CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS
3333 Quality Dr.
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
REGIONAL VSP VISION CARE OFFICES
VSP has offices in the following cities:
VSP Eyes of Hope gift certificate programs ensure that adults and children in need, including
those affected by disaster, have access to quality eye care and new glasses at no cost through
a local VSP network doctor. We work closely with our national network of community partners
to help identify and distribute gift certificates to those most in need. Also check with your stu-
dent's school nurse!
Friends of Man
P.O. Box 937
Littleton, CO 80160-0937
At Friends of Man we are a 501(c)(3), non-profit, tax-exempt charity using 100% of donations for
charitable assistance. We work through Referring Professionals (caseworkers, case managers,
health care workers, social workers, counselors, teachers, clergy) who apply on behalf of their
patients and clients needing mobility equipment, prosthetics, glasses, dentures, hearing aids,
and much more!
Friends of Man helps people of all ages with a large variety of needs, including:
- Mobility Equipment (Wheelchairs, Prostheses, Auto/Van Modifications, etc.)
Department of Pediatrics – School Based and Community Health Program
HFHS Ruth Ellis Health & Wellness Center
Highland Park, MI 48203
Serves clients 10-21 years old. If this person comes to the health center for a checkup/well exam,
we can give them a voucher for free exam and free pair of eye glasses at Henry Ford Optimeyes.
MERCY PLACE Free Clinic
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland Staff is bi-lingual (Spanish)
Pontiac, MI 48342
Monday thru Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. by appointment only. Mercy Place is an outpatient clinic
affiliated with St. Joseph Mercy Oakland, which provides comprehensive health care, treatment
and prevention to uninsured people who do not qualify for other health care alternatives. It is
located in downtown Pontiac, and although most clients come from the Pontiac area, the clinic
serves select, northern Oakland County zip codes.The clinic is supported by volunteer physic-
ians who donate their time and generous donors who endorse the Mercy mission of caring for
all, regardless of their ability to pay. Mercy Place exemplifies our Mercy mission and values,
which emphasize justice by working for the common good through advancing the health status
of the community. The mission especially takes steps to ensure that the needs of the under-
served are addressed.
Ophthalmology program with eyeglass program.
Greater Detroit Agency for the Blind and Visually Impaired
16625 Grand River Ave.
Detroit, MI 48227
Provision of specialized, in-home vision services at no-cost for visually impaired persons
including help in learning to function independently. Formerly Upshaw Institute for the
Kiwanis Club of Woodhaven
Woodhaven, MI 48183-5227
Provides eyeglasses to needy Brownstown, Gibraltar and Woodhaven children.
Our Children's Fund
c/o WBSD Special Services
West Bloomfield, MI 48324
Our Children’s Fund is able to supply backpacks, school supplies and clothing as well financial
assistance for summer school classes and academic enrichment. Through donations to the WB/
KH Blessing in a Backpack program, food is also provided. 100% of all contributions are used to
help students and families in need. Only for the school children of this district!!
Saline Area Social Services
224 W. Michigan Ave.
Saline, MI 48176
Our mission is to help our struggling neighbors within the Saline Area School District by
providing them the extra aid, tools and resources to help improve their lives. Helps provide
personal items such as eyeglasses.
VARIOUS TYPES OF COMMUNICATIONS FOR THOSE WITH LOW VISION
Detroit Radio Information Service (WDET-FM)
WDET 101.9 FM
4600 Cass Ave.
Detroit, MI 48201
The Detroit Radio Information Service (DRIS) is S.E. MI'sRadio Reading/Audio Information
Service for people with disabilities. It is a special audience service of WDET 101.9 FM and
Wayne State University. DRIS embraces and enhances the robust community engagement
mission to expand knowledge, educate, inform and culturally enlighten its listeners. DRIS
is the only service of its kind in the region providing free reading and audio information
programming for one of the community's most under-served population groups by provid-
ing equal access to information. Since 1978, it has filled an information void in the blind &
print-impaired population by offering a simple, cost-effective method of accessing printed
and visual news and information published in hundreds of daily, weekly and monthly perio-
The "Matilda Ziegler Magazine for the Blind" is free to anyone who is legally blind. It is available
on cassette, in Braille, online or via e-mail. It reprints a wide range of articles from newspapers
Seedlings Braille Books for Children
P.O. Box 51924
Livonia, MI 48151-5924
Phone: 734-427-8552 800-777-8552
Seedlings Braille Books for Children is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing high quality,
low-cost children's books in braille. Our small staff works hard transcribing, proof-reading, printing,
binding, and shipping over 20,000 books per year. In addition, we are always diligently working to
obtain grants and donations which enable us to keep our prices affordable for you. Our books are
sold for approximately half of the actual production price, and our prices have not been increased
for over 20 years!
Michigan Loan Funds
c/o United Cerebral Palsy of Michigan
1325 S. Washington Ave.
Lansing, MI 48910
Phone: 517-203-1200 800-828-2714
The Michigan Loan Funds are programs of United Cerebral Palsy of Michigan, which works in
partnership with Michigan State University Federal Credit Union (MSUFCU) to provide loans. It
is funded through public and private donations, and started with grants from the United States
Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Services Administration.
MICHIGAN ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY LOAN FUND
Michigan Assistive Technology Loan Fund (MATLF) and Michigan Employment Loan Fund (MELF)
are programs of United Cerebral Palsy of Michigan, which works in partnership with Michigan State
University Federal Credit Union (MSUFCU), to provide loans. They are funded through public and private donations, and started with grants from the United States Department of Education’s Re-
habilitation Services Administration.
The mission of MATL supports the purchase of needed technology through low-interest rates
and loan guarantees and is a service partially supported through Michigan’s Assistive Techn-
ology Program (MATP). Assistive technology is defined as any item, piece of equipment, or
device that enables an individual with a disability to improve individual independence and
quality of life.
LIBRARY RESOURCES FOR THOSE WITH DISABILITIES
National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
The Library of Congress
Washington, DC 20542
The National Library Service maintains a collection of over 32,000 large-print and braille
music scores, texts, and instructional recordings on cassette about music and musicians.
Large print music has a minimum of 14-point type and a one inch staff size. Musical scores,
librettos, biographies of popular and classical musicians and some reference works are in-
cluded in the collection. Braille music transcriptions of classical and popular music are avail-
able as well as librettos and instructional method books. Web-braille makes many items avail-
able to braille readers. A complete list of Music Selection materials is available by visiting the
web address above. Special equipment needed is loaned free too!
BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download) is another way to get books from the Braille
and Talking Book Library. With BARD you can download talking books on demand and play
them on your NLS Digital Talking Book Player. Your BARD password will be sent to the email
address you provide. You will then have access to download over 32,000 Talking Books and
magazines with new titles added every week.
To download books, you will need:
A BARD password / A computer and high-speed internet connection / A USB flash drive
Braille and Talking Book Library
We provide library service for individuals unable to use standard print materials.
- BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download)
- Michigan's Locally Recorded Digital Talking Books
- MDOC Inmate Talking Book Service
- Digital Machines and Equipment
- Described Video Collection
- Magazine Collection DOC icon
More than 70 magazines are available for no charge on digital
cartridge or in Braille.
The Detroit Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (LBPH)
3666 Grand River Ave.
Detroit, MI 48208
Located at the Douglass Branch. It offers services, materials, and events to anyone with a visual
or physical handicap, or a reading disability. The library lends talking books and players to people
who live in Detroit and Highland Park.Schools, nursing homes, and senior residences can also
borrow these materials.
Programs are for Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped customers who reside in Detroit,
Highland Park, and Hamtramck. All programs are free of charge but you must register in advance.
Our collection includes many genres in the following formats:
- Spanish language audio books
- Reference sources on the American Disabilities Act (ADA)
- Large print and braille sheet music (through the National Library Service)
- Recorded music instruction (through the National Library Service)
Clinton-Macomb Public Library Library for the Blind
40900 Romeo Plank
Clinton Twp., MI 48038
Phone: 586-286-1580 Toll free 1-855-203-5274
Macomb Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (MLBPH) serves all residents
of Macomb County, who qualify, by providing audio books and players, large print books,
equipment that enlarges text, equipment for printing Braille materials, and more. All ser-
vices are free. Materials are mailed postage free to and from the reader.
Services We Offer:
- Assistive technology demonstrations
- Reference and informational services
Who Can Join:
In order for you to become a Bookshare® member, an expert must confirm that you have
a print disability that severely inhibits or prevents you from reading traditional print mat-
erials. Anyone in the world with a qualifying print disability may join Bookshare.
Bookshare® is FREE for qualified U.S. students of any age and schools through an award
from OSEP (Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education). People
with qualifying conditions who are not U.S. students, and organizations serving them, pay
a low membership fee.
1. For students, adults, seniors, veterans & other
individuals with print disabilities
2. Find and read unlimited books on your own
3. Access free reading tools
110 E. 30th
New York, NY 10016
The JBI Library is an independent and free library for the visually impaired, blind, physically
disabled and reading disabled that produces books of Jewish and general interest in Audio,
Large Print and in Braille.The Library serves eligible individuals of all ages and backgrounds
all over the world.