Empowering People to Join or Stay in the Workforce is a Great Reason to Support the Council During The Big Share

An aerial view of Madison’s isthmus with the Big Share 10th anniversary logo and the text Save the date Tuesday, March 5

The Big Share is an annual day of online giving that supports nearly 70 nonprofits that are members of Community Shares of Wisconsin (CSW). The Council is one of those organizations. CSW members represent a wide range of causes including voting rights, healthy food systems, racial justice, criminal justice reform, housing advocacy and environmental protection. The Big Share, which takes place Tuesday, March 5, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

A Big Share gift to the Council supports our advocacy and education missions as well as our vision services, which help people adapt to and cope with changing vision. For some of our clients, that means providing skills that will help them join or remain in the workforce. Two of our vision service offerings, Orientation and Mobility (O&M) training and Access Technology instruction, are particularly important for employment success.

“People with vision impairment can do anything a person with sight can do short of flying a plane,” says the Certified O&M Specialist and Vision Rehabilitation Therapist Brent Perzentka.

Stoughton resident Maggie Groshan says the Council’s help is critical to her current pivot back into the job market. “The Council has been a huge part of going back to school so I can get a new job in a field I want to be in,” Maggie says. “For example, without the Council’s access technology services, I would not have been able to continue with school.”

“Tech is a terrific tool,” says Council Access Technology Specialist Jim Denham. “But unless you know how to use that tool to your advantage, it’s just going to sit there. We use technology to access information, screen read, and learn to use magnification. We help make the connection where the person meets the technology.”

Maggie is experiencing those benefits first-hand. “The easiest way to do school for me right now is online,” she says. “The Council helped me receive JAWS (screen reader software) and use a braille display to help with notes and connect it to my computer so I can read instead of always having to listen to my schoolwork.” Maggie has also been a member of the Council’s College and Working Age Low Vision Support Group, a monthly online gathering of folks from around the state who share thoughts on school and the job market.

The Council invites you to help fuel our efforts to support employment for people with vision loss during The Big Share this year. You don’t even have to wait until March 5. Our Big Share web page is already live and ready to accept your gift!

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