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.

This document is written for parents and provides an overview of Person-Centered Planning, including action steps, young adult participation in the process, and developing natural supports. There are numerous links to additional resources.

Source: National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET)

At this site parents can learn specific tactics to try with children who are reluctant to eat certain foods or textures.

Source: FamilyConnect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments

Camp in Oakland, Maine

This article outlines ways in which parents can help their children to find playmates and make friends.

Source: FamilyConnect

Dr. Virginia Bishop explains the vision screening process and provides a parent questionnaire.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

Practical suggestions for modifications in the home and the environment to minimize tripping hazards.

Source: VisionAware

Project SALUTE describes the hierarchy of communication symbols, from most abstract to most concrete. Color photographs of each of the eleven symbols are included; available in English and Spanish. 

The author offers ideas parents can use to foster a love of reading and writing in preschool-age children with visual impairments.

Source: FamilyConnect

AFB's Family Connect shares tips on choosing books to read with small children, adding tactile drawings and braille to a book, and making story bags or story boxes.

Source: FamilyConnect

Diane Miller shares her experiences in helping her blind daughter to develop literacy skills. She describes the importance of bridging concepts, her search for braille books, homemade books, and how she created a literate environment.

Source: Family Connect

In a 90-minute recorded webinar, Dr. Lauren Lieberman discusses helping individuals who are deafblind to develop an interest in recreational activities. She offers suggestions on individualizing one's approach, researching communication patterns, developing a plan, and maintaining interest.

Source: National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness (NCDB)

Alison Rickerl describes some of the challenges of being a parent of a young girl who has a visual impairment; available in English and Spanish.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

For residents of the U.K., sources of information, organizations, and groups that can help if you are a blind or partially sighted parent.

Source: Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB)

List of resources for families of children who are blind or visually impaired on topics such as Parenting and General Information, Family Life and Siblings, Literacy, Braille Books and Learning Materials, and Education, Advocacy & Early Intervention.

Source: Perkins School for the Blind

This article discusses the importance of routines and offers helpful tips for establishing them.

Source: FamilyConnect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairment

Part of the Perkins Webinar series, this presentation provides an overview of the "5-E format" of an inquiry lesson, and discusses recent research on inquiry-based education for students with visual impairments.

Source: Perkins eLearning

This video clip from WSSB shows Greg Williams, Ph.D., from Independence Science discusses how to safely organize and set up a laboratory bench for students who are blind or visually impaired.

Source: Washington State School for the Blind

Seedlings Braille Books for Children is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization dedicated to increasing the opportunity for literacy by providing high quality, low cost braille books for children.

Eileen Hammar and Anne Malatchi list seven ways to make the IEP team an effective one; available in Spanish.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

Symptoms of poor vision: changes in appearance of the eye and some behavioral indications.

Source: EyeHelp