For thousands of people with blindness or low vision, the Center for the Visually Impaired (CVI) has been an essential partner in the journey to independence.
Visual impairment can affect anyone – from infants and teenagers to middle-aged adults and seniors – and can have an overwhelming impact on family interactions, education, employment and social life. Dedicated to the dignity and self worth of each person, CVI helps people at all stages of visual impairment achieve their highest level of self-sufficiency.
The Center is the largest organization of its kind in Georgia, serving more than 5,000 people of all ages annually. Since 1962, we have provided a wide spectrum of services customized to meet each individual’s needs.
In Georgia, adults, children and their families with vision loss have only one place to turn for the full range of comprehensive services that make success in life achievable – CVI.
LOW VISION SERVICES
The Florence Maxwell Low Vision Clinic enables children and adults with some functional vision to make the best use of their sight so that they can continue to lead productive and independent lives. Although the clinic's clients have a variety of eye conditions, the most common causes of low vision are macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and retinitis pigmentosa.
One-on-one consultations with specialized optometrists, certified low vision therapists and a licensed clinical social worker help people cope with their visual conditions. These professionals introduce participants to an array of adaptive devices such as powerful magnifiers, enhanced lighting, computers that magnify or speak, and electronic magnifiers. Personalized training and counseling are provided, and services may be covered by Medicare or are provided at no charge.
BEGIN: Early Childhood and Preschool Services
BEGIN provides essential services to enhance development and potential for newborn to early school-aged children with severe visual impairments. Developmental and educational activities for children are provided, while information, emotional support and guidance are offered to parents enabling them to become advocates for their child.
STARS: Social, Therapeutic, Academic and Recreational Services
STARS is an innovative program for students ages six to 21, which addresses the isolation that many students with visual impairments experience in typical school systems. Through weekend activities, after-school enrichment classes, summer camps and mentoring, STARS teaches the skills these children need to succeed in life.
All adults receive an individualized, comprehensive rehabilitation program developed for their specific needs and goals for independence. Training helps clients overcome the practical issues of vision loss, whether focusing on employment or independent living skills; classes include activities of daily living, orientation and mobility, Braille, computer skills, and assistive technology. In this therapeutic environment, clients form lasting friendships while confronting their unique visual challenges.
For those who are unable to receive services at the Center due to health or travel challenges, CVI can provide vision rehabilitation services in community settings such as private homes, retirement communities and senior centers. Every year, outreach programs bring solutions and coping skills to hundreds of adults – with the hope of enhancing the quality of their lives.
CVI provides many opportunities for people to share their skills and give back to the community. Work one-on-one and provide support for someone who is home-bound. Help with fundraising. Assist with children’s activities. Volunteer in the VisAbility store. Whatever your talents, and no matter what amount of time you have available, we welcome everyone who wants to make a difference.