Leader Dogs for the Blind Partners with Illinois' Center for Sight & Hearing
Leader Dog Will Offer Orientation and Mobility Services for Center for Sight & Hearing Clients
Jun 09, 2015, 11:00 ET
ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich., June 9, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Leader Dogs for the Blind, in partnership with Center for Sight & Hearing, will now assist Illinoisans through orientation and mobility (O&M) training.
The Center for Sight & Hearing is a result of 52 local Lions Clubs who dreamed up the facility in the 1950s – that came to fruition in 1962. Today, Lions Clubs across the country support the Leader Dogs for the Blind. Not only do Illinois Lions support Leader Dog, the previous Illinois District 1-D Governor Fred Peska was an avid supporter, which led to the Leader Dog and Center for Sight & Hearing partnership.
"Leader Dog is excited to begin a partnership with the Center for Sight & Hearing," said Sue Daniels, President and CEO of Leader Dog. "Its cause aligns with the Leader Dog mission so well, as we both wish to provide independence for those who are blind or have low vision."
"Being able to offer our clients Leader Dog's O&M services will allow them to continue to reach new heights," said Diane Jones, President of Center for Sight & Hearing. "We help our clients achieve everything from employment to simply travel outside of their homes, and O&M will be another rewarding option for them to accomplish all their goals."
O&M training empowers individuals who are blind with the skills needed to travel safely using a white cane in a much shorter timeframe than traditional O&M programs.The one-on-one instruction is tailored to each person's capabilities allowing for individual needs to be met.Training includes using a white cane, utilizing a human guide, using orientation skills and cardinal directions, problem solving along the route, crossing both narrow and wide streets safely, re-orientating, shopping and soliciting assistance when needed.
Leader Dog's presence in Illinois to date includes 36 graduated O&M clients and over 560 clients who have been partnered with a Leader Dog.
The Center for Sight & Hearing has served northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin since 1962 helping individuals with a vision and/or hearing loss to live more independent lives. Offering services and solutions for all levels of impairment, the Center strives to be a resource for individuals and families living with these two most prevalent and least recognized disabilities in our community.
About Leader Dogs for the Blind
Rochester Hills, Mich.-based Leader Dogs for the Blind is a nonprofit organization that has been providing independent travel to people who are blind through the use of Leader Dogs since its founding in 1939. Over the years, Leader Dogs for the Blind has provided independent mobility to more than 14,500 individuals. The services of the organization are provided free of charge. The organization also provides classes for orientation and mobility, pedestrian GPS and a summer camp for teens. For more information on Leader Dogs for the Blind, call (888) 777-5332 or visit www.leaderdog.org.
About Center for Sight & Hearing
Rockford, Illinois – based Center for Sight & Hearing (Center) is a private, not-for-profit, freestanding community rehabilitation and healthcare facility which offers vision and/or hearing loss services both on and off site in the northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin region. Since 1962, the Center's focus is on independence and integration of individuals into their communities through programs and services. Programs and Services are available for individuals with different levels of vision and/or hearing loss, of all ages, diversity and skills. Programs and services offered include Rehabilitation Teaching, Low Vision and Hearing Clinic services, Communication Services (sign language interpreting, braille, captioning), Social/Recreation Programs and Simple Solutions (technology and assistive device sales and demonstration store). For more information on the Center for Sight & Hearing, call 815 332 6800 or visit www.centerforsighthearing.org.
Last year, the Center for Sight & Hearing provided almost 3,500 low vision and hearing clinic services, taught 457 to live independently through rehabilitation teaching, enhanced the lives of hundreds through social, recreational and support groups, and provided 3,851 hours of Sign Language Interpreting and Captioning.
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SOURCE Leader Dogs for the Blind
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