Family Resources

Having a family member who is blind or visually impaired can affect many areas of family life. Parents and relatives face a variety of challenges when making decisions about education, rehabilitation and other services. Older adults may want information on resources, tools, or ways to learn new skills they need to live independently. These websites for families include information on workshops, services, education, and many other resources.

Psychologist offers suggestions to address sleeping challenges for children who are blind or visually impaired in this video webcast

Source: Perkins School for the Blind, Perkins eLearning

Jan Bailey describes her experience growing up without sight, and notes the positive influence of high parental expectations.

Source: Future Reflections, Fall 1990

Seven qualified blind and visually impaired teens aged 14 to 17 are selected to explore the companionship, independence and responsibility of the Guide Dog mobility lifestyle. Campers will stay in our student residence, and will need to be able to care for their own activities of daily living. Call to apply.

Information and resources about grants and scholarships, taxes, and financial help for people with disabilities. The scholarship information is organized by type of disability, e.g., hearing, vision, etc.

Source: Money Geek

The Minger Foundation is named for Michael Minger, who perished in a fire while he was a college student.  The Foundation is dedicated to preventing deaths like Michael's by preparing students with disabilities to respond to dangerous situations, particularly fire. The link above leads you to Train the Trainer materials for teaching fire safety to students with disabilities. The project site contains downloadable resources, and training videos.

Source: The Minger Foundation

This is a step-by-step guide to a technique to help your baby sleep independently for longer periods of time.


This article explores five reasons why a baby might not sleep. Some of these problems are experienced by all babies, some are specific to blind babies. Each sleep problem is accompanied by a sleep solution.


Christine Faltz, who is herself blind and the mother of two children who are blind, offers numerous specific suggestions to help young children learn about the world.

Source: National Foundation of the Blind (NFB)

This online book for parents and teachers is full of information about vision, development, learning activities, communication, safety, movement, and much more.

Also in Spanish.

Source: Hesperian Foundation

This article explains how learning about communication and language differs for a baby who is visually impaired, and offers suggestions for helping your child learn to communicate.

Source: FamilyConnect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments

This article has practical suggestions for parents of preschoolers for developing social skills.

Source: FamilyConnect

This article provides suggestions for making experiences in the community more meaningful for children with visual impairments.

Source: FamilyConnect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments

Starting with the home and expanding to the neighborhood, this article tells parents how to help preschoolers know where they are, how they got there, and how they can find the way back.

Source: FamilyConnect

This article offers practical tips for helping a child to be more independent in the bathroom, including how to use unfamiliar bathrooms.

Source: FamilyConnect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments

O&M skills begin when a baby learns to balance and walk. Advice for enhancing confidence and development.

Source: FamilyConnect

Find out more about the history of teaching science at Perkins School for the Blind, including a tactile museum featuring objects from the natural world and science disciplines.

Source: Perkins History Museum—Perkins School for the Blind

Authored by Kay L. Clarke of the Ohio Center for Deafblind Education, this downloadable booklet includes detailed instructions for creating structures for safe and independent play.

Source: Ohio Center for Deafblind Education

A survey for identifying safety issues with many ideas for solutions and adaptations.

Source: VisionAware

This page offers information to help parents understand how their baby experiences the world and includes activities for encouraging exploration.

Source: American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)

This 20-page guidebook helps parents and early intervention professionals encourage play in the lives of children with disabilities.  Included are descriptions of six types of emerging play, advice on play materials, positioning options, and adaptations (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader).