Welcome to New Vision

What we do   |   Join Us for the Eye Bowl   |   Dining in the Dark 2015
Grants from Universal, United Way   |   Latest newsletter available now   |   Volunteers Needed!
Testimonial: Mr. Church   |   Testimonial: Mrs. Deblasio   |   New Vision store
2014 Honor Roll of Donors

collage of words related to New Vision and vision rehabilitation

What we do

New Vision for Independence provides training to help individuals with low vision or blindness adapt to vision loss. Imagine doing your daily activities -- pouring a cup of coffee, cooking breakfast, getting to work, dialing the phone, checking email -- with no vision. It would be difficult. New Vision's free training strives to make life easier post-vision loss. We serve Lake and Sumter Counties and The Villages. More>

For the most up-to-date news from New Vision, please visit our Facebook page and Like us! http://www.facebook.com/newvisionfl

Eye Bowl

Join Us for the Eye Bowl

New Vision for Independence and Mid Florida Eye Center recently completed the first Eye Bowl event for eye doctors' offices. Check out details on our Facebook page.

Eye Bowl: ALFs vs. SNFs vs. ILFs has been cancelled. Thanks for your interest!

Dine for a night without site, text on top of a photo of silverware

Dining in the Dark 2015

Save the Date - April 24, 2015

Planning Committee Volunteers Needed 

Planning is underway for the fifth installment of Dining in the Dark. The fifth annual event will take place April 24, 2015 at Lake Receptions in Mount Dora. New Vision for Independence, the local agency serving the visually impaired and blind of Lake and Sumter counties, seeks planning committee volunteers to help with all aspects of the event, such as silent auction, sponsorships, marketing, ticket sales, and other logistical tasks. The committee will meet monthly, and then more frequently as the event date nears.

Served in total darkness, the annual Dining in the Dark for New Vision event is a unique expedition in to a world of smell, taste, sound and texture. Guests sit down for dinner, the lights are turned off, and volunteers from the Lake County Sheriff's SWAT team, as part of a training exercise, will serve dinner during this truly memorable dining experience. In addition to giving everyone a whole new way to think about darkness, vision, and the power of perception, New Vision's goal is to raise $20,000 to provide rehabilitation training and instruction to people of all ages in Lake and Sumter counties.

All interested volunteers are encouraged to email Chantel Buck at cbuck@newvisionfl.org for more information.

Grants from Universal, United Way

New Vision awarded grants from Universal Orlando Foundation, United Way for blind services

Leesburg, Florida - July 23, 2014 - The Universal Orlando Foundation awarded a grant in the amount of $10,000 to New Vision for Independence. Funds will be used for Children's Blind Services, to provide specialized training and services for children from birth through high school graduation throughout Lake and Sumter counties. Applications for funding through this Foundation are accepted on an invitation-only basis.

The United Way of Lake and Sumter Counties also awarded New Vision a grant in the amount of $15,000 for vision rehabilitation services for adults and babies.

"We are grateful to Universal Orlando Foundation and United Way for their support," said Chantel Buck, New Vision President/CEO. "Their investments in New Vision's rehabilitation services demonstrates a community commitment to removing blindness as a barrier to independence."

photo of four teens holding paychecks and smiling
Our summer transition program is in full-swing

Latest newsletter available now

July 2014 -- View the lastest New Vision News!

Stories in this issue include:

  • Transition Summer Internship
  • "Going Blind"
  • Book Nook
  • Volunteers Needed
  • Children's Learning & Vision Month
  • Happy Birthday!
  • Upcoming Events
To subscribe to our mailing list, access audio versions, or read past newsletters, visit our newsletter page. Please contact us to request a large print or cassette version of this newsletter.

woman standing next to a table with information about New Vision arranged upon it
Volunteers like Valerie are needed to help with behind-the-scenes work!

Volunteers Needed!

In-office volunteers needed at New Vision!.

Volunteers are needed in the Leesburg office to help with data entry, phone calls, and other projects in support of the vision rehabilitation team. A weekly commitment of 3-6 hours is desired.

For more information, contact Terry Tabone at 352-435-5040 or info@newvisionfl.org. Perspective volunteers should complete a volunteer application available on New Vision's website, newvisionfl.org. Volunteers may be required to complete a level 2 background check to assist with some projects.

Man holding a shiny orange golf ball
Mr. Church is legally blind and got a hole in one at a golf course in The Villages.

Testimonial: Mr. Church

April 1, 2013 -- "Mr. Church is a very active resident in the Villages. One of his favorite games is golf. In getting to know Mr. Church we discovered he was open to trying different golf balls to see if he was able to visually locate them any easier. He was the first client to try the "low vision" golf ball which has a mirrored quality to it. I gave him one to try and told him I would check back in a few weeks.

"When I saw him next he had quite a story to tell. He said he was on the Churchill course in the Villages with his wife and he hit a hole-in-one on the third hole. When you complete a game and have gotten a hole-in-one you are asked to fill out a form as proof with witnesses signatures. When his wife began filling in the information the attendant told her she couldn't do it, that he had to if he made the hole-in-one. She said 'he can't, he's blind.' The attendant said '...but he hit a hole-in-one...' The other couple they golfed with vouched for him and the shack attendant was amazed.

"Mr. Church had to retire his golf ball (a tradition for the ball that made the hole-in-one), but plans to get more like it."

~As reported by Jenna Pruett, Vision Rehabilitation Program Coordinator

braille sign
Mrs. Deblasio's braille and mobility instruction helped her identify an error in a braille sign at her local library.

Testimonial: Mrs. Deblasio

December 11, 2013 -- "Have you ever noticed braille in your community during your everyday life? Maybe you see braille on public restroom signs, a building room number, or even on the lid of your fast food drink. Have you ever tried to read it and wondered what it says? You might be surprised by what you read!

"Judith Deblasio is an active wife and mother. She loves spending time with her friends and going on cruises with her family. This year she decided she wanted to increase her independence so she started learning braille and receiving orientation and mobility training from New Vision for independence. Mrs. Deblasio quickly mastered the use of her long cane and eagerly participated in community-based lessons. She loved using her newly acquired abilities to take walks in her neighborhood, shop independently, and select books for her daughter from her local library.

"On her final mobility lesson she was in the process of mastering elevator use when she said "Hmmm... this is strange. I know this building only has two floors but this braille sign states that we are at the 3rd floor". We joked about this secret "Twilight Zone" floor where we might have arrived. She read the signs again and realized that the floor was mismarked. This was particularly exciting because Mrs. Deblasio had just completed her lessons in uncontracted braille the week before and this was her first time actually reading braille signs in public. With her instructor's urging Mrs. Deblasio dutifully and politely reported the error to the information desk. The employee was astonished that no one - not even compliance inspectors - had ever noticed the incorrectly labeled sign that must have been there several years. She sincerely thanked Mrs. Deblasio and promised to get the sign corrected.

"Mrs. Deblasio is an excellent student who quickly applied all that she has learned. We didn't actually arrive at the Twilight Zone that day, but when she stepped off that elevator Mrs. Deblasio knew she had the skills and confidence to go wherever she wants to go!"

- Reported by Bebe Chudeusz, COMS, CVRT, CTVI

Long sleeve white shirt with black sleeves with the Braille alphabet, the New Vision logo, and a line saying \\\\\\\\
Braille alphabet baseball jersey for $20.99

New Vision store

Check out the new New Vision store at CafePress.com. There are several shirts, a mouse pad, some bags, and more, all with New Vision's logo and other fun surprises. New Vision makes a portion of the sales of each item which will go to fund services for adults and babies with low vision or blindness.

Do you have an idea for a new item to sell? Contact us!

Honor Rolls of Donors 2014

2014 Honor Roll of Donors

The support of these individuals, businesses, and organizations empower New Vision to provide rehabilitation, community education, and support services to people of all ages with low vision or blindness and their families in Lake and Sumter counties: 

Independence Investors ($10,000+):

  •  State of Florida, Dept. of Education, Division of Blind Service
  • Lake-Sumter State College (in-kind)
  • United Way of Lake & Sumter Counties
  • Lake County Tax Collector's Office employees
  • Universal Orlando Foundation

New Vision Partners ($1,000-$9,999):

  • Orange Blossom Gardens Lions Club
  • Colleen A. Kollmann
  • Walt Disney World Resorts (in-kind)
  • Lake Eye Associates
  • Mid-Florida Eye Center

Self-Confidence Sponsors ($500-999):

  • Beacon Advanced Eye Care Center
  • Mount Dora Lions Club
  • Eustis Moose Lodge
  • Total Eye Care
View full Donor Honor Roll>  


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9501 US Highway 441, Leesburg, FL 34788
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