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Council Seeks Sharper Vision Store Manager

WCBVI is seeking to hire a qualified store manager for our Sharper Vision Store. This is a 37.5 hours/week, full-time, exempt position based at the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired, 754 Williamson St, Madison, WI 53703. The store manager provides exemplary customer service and education to individuals, their families, other agency representatives and the general public.  To apply, submit cover letter, highlighting pertinent experience and training along...
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Celebrating Local Success: Accessible Pedestrian Signals

An accessible pedestrian signal placed at an intersection features a large arrow button to turn on audio cues to cross the street. Three Wisconsin residents who are visually impaired saw a need for Accessible Pedestrian Signals (APS) to be installed in their communities. Penny Happli of Rib Mountain, Joseph Smet of Fond Du Lac, and Denise Jess of Madison, are celebrating the success of their APS installation requests. All three community members mobilized and took initiative to get an APS in...
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Advocating for Accessible Pedestrian Signals

You are standing at the corner, about to cross a street. You hear that traffic has stopped, but has the light really changed color, or is it just a break in traffic? If you cannot see the "Walk" and "Don't Walk" signage, the only other way to know for sure is to either wait for a car to travel parallel to you, or to use an accessible pedestrian signal. Accessible pedestrian signals (APS) provide an audible indication for when the light changes. Hear a short clip of what an audible signal...
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Your Gift is Valued

Financial gifts in this last month of the year are vital to all who rely on the Council for services, support and information. As you plan your year-end giving, please consider making a meaningful gift to the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired. Here are a few examples that can help move someone from isolation to independence: $12 – ream of braille paper $25 – half hour of interpretive services for a client who does not speak English $35 – white cane $80 – low...
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Planning Coordinator Position Description

The Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired is seeking to hire a qualified Planning Coordinator. This is a 37.5 hour/week, full-time position based at the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired, 754 Williamson Street, Madison, WI 53703.   To apply, submit cover letter highlighting pertinent experience, three references, and a resume by Sunday, December 9 by 11:30 p.m. Applications are to be submitted in MS Word and emailed to This email address is...
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News You Can Use: Stay Active in Winter

A man uses walking poles to hike in a snow-covered landscape. When you're blind or visually impaired, safely navigating the snow and ice of Wisconsin winters takes extra care. Read on to learn about the tools and techniques that can help you stay active, go holiday shopping with friends and enjoy our winter wonderland. Ten Safety Tips for Walking in The Winter: Walk slowly and deliberately, using a "penguin" walking technique. A "penguin" walking technique is turning feet slightly...
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Council Closed for the Holidays

The Wisconsin Council of the Blind and Visually will be closed Monday, December 24, Tuesday, December 25, Monday, December 31 and Tuesday, January 1.

Happy Holidays!

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Dining in the Dark

Vignette Dining Club will serve a delicious multi-course vegetarian meal that challenges participants to rethink the importance of vision in the eating experience. Guests wear blindfolds while dining and the menu is only revealed after each guest takes a bite. Reserve your plate online at http://www.vignettedining.com/the-menu.html. Call (608)237-8114 with any questions or concerns. Dinner costs $45 per person and does not include gratuity - with proceeds benefiting the Council. Invite your...
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Making the Most of Built-in Magnification

Most operating systems today have built-in features that can assist individuals with low vision. This class will explore screen magnification features on Windows, an iPad and the Mac and show you how to make the information displayed on these devices much easier to see.

This class is Tuesday, November 20 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and will be held online.

For registration and more information, call 608-255-1166. There is no cost to attend this class.

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November 2018 On Sight

Making Store Tags More Accessible Volunteer Ali removes an old store tag and replaces it with a large print, brailled tag. A redesign of the Council’s Sharper Vision Store tags means shoppers can easily find what they are looking for and how much it costs. The tags on each product feature the item number, item name, color of the item, and price. Tags are in large print, braille, and audio. “We wanted to offer people who are blind or visually impaired the opportunity to come into the...
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Online Auction a Success!

The Council’s online auction raised over $4,500! Heartfelt thanks to the businesses and individuals who donated nearly 150 items and the supporters who generously bid on those items. The friendly competition among bidders helped us exceed our goal. Almost 500 bids were placed, averaging 5 bids per item. We will use the proceeds to buy a DSLR camera, accessories and professional services which will result in high quality, high definition photos for our publications, promotions and Store...
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Updating the Law Regarding Service Animals

Julie decides to stop in to Bob's Market on her way home from work. She has her service dog, Jasper, accompanying her. When Bob sees Julie and her dog entering the store, he is confused. He wonders why that lady has a dog with her. Is it a service animal or an emotional support animal, or a pet? How can he find out? Can he approach Julie, or will he be violating the law? What questions can he ask? The ambiguity in Wisconsin service animal law leaves business owners and employees confused and...
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Built-in Screen Magnifiers: A Free Way to Get the Accessibility You Need, Right on Your Computer

Assistive technologies, such as magnifiers and screen-readers, have increased accessibility to information now more than ever before. As someone new to magnification, consider utilizing the built-in accessibility options before purchasing equipment or installing software. "I use these settings every day," says Kathy Brockman, Council board treasurer. "I can customize my computer to display text in ways that meet my specific needs. There is a lot out there in terms of technology that can help...
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Exhibit Featuring Artists who are Blind or Visually Impaired.

On Friday, October 5, the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired hosted a Gallery Night featuring artists who are blind or visually impaired. Works ranged from pencil sketches to water color to paper cutting to large oil painted canvases. The event was a part of the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMoCA) seasonal gallery nights and one of nearly 70 locations throughout the city featuring art and entertainment. Participating artists talked to guests about how they create art...
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Legislative Update: How to Impact the Wisconsin State Budget

State agencies, such as the Department of Workforce Development, the Department of Public Instruction, the Department of Transportation, and the Department of Health Services-which houses the Office for the Blind and Visually Impaired (OBVI)-use tax dollars to create and manage programs that help Wisconsinites live happy, empowered lives. The Wisconsin Biennial Budget provides the breakdown of funding so these state departments can implement programs effectively.   Knowing how the...
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