I get questions many times about available apps for people who have vision loss. I thought I’d write a brief description of 5 apps that have great features for people who are blind or visually impaired.

  1. LookTel Money Reader – This app uses the camera on the back of the phone/tablet and then says out loud along with large print on the screen what nomination the bill is. This allows easy money identification at home or while out.
  2. Tap Tap See – This app also uses the camera to take a picture of an object the person needs to identify. Using an internet search Tap Tap See will give an audio description of the item.
  3. Be My Eyes – Be My Eyes is similar to Tap Tap See, it uses the camera but you connect to a live person. This person is a volunteer so they do not have any training with working with people with vision loss. The person with the vision loss uses their camera to show what item they need identified or read and the volunteer assists them.
  4. KNFB Reader – While this app is not free like the others it has a purpose most would find priceless. This app converts text to speech and/or Braille for users. It can read documents long and short by taking a picture using the camera on the phone/tablet and using ocular character recognition (OCR) can read the document out loud.
  5. Seeing AI – This is one of my favorite apps. Seeing AI has multiple purposes again using the phone/tablet’s camera. This app can identify text such as KNFB Reader using OCR for short and longer text. And unlike any other OCR it is able to read some handwriting! It can also identify money like the LookTel Money Reader. It has a bar code reader to give product description and read labels. It can also give a description of people and the scene/surroundings indoors.

These apps are not a one size fits all or needed for everyone but a great tool for a person’s tool kit. If you have questions on how to download or anything else please contact Mandy Smith at (785)528-3105.

 

Resource Center for Independent Living, Inc. (RCIL), a non-profit organization, wishes to thank the family of Patricia Peterson for naming RCIL as the beneficiary of memorial contributions made in her name. As a founding board member of RCIL, Mrs. Peterson was instrumental in creating and overseeing Resource Center for Independent Living, Inc. in 1984 which has since then realized significant growth and served thousands of Kansans with disabilities over the last 33+ years.

What does RCIL do? RCIL receives a grant from Kansas Rehabilitation Services to provide Core Services including Independent Living Skills Training, Advocacy, Peer Support, Youth Transition, and Nursing Facility Transition in fifteen counties.  Information and Referral is available to all regardless of residency.  RCIL provides Assistive Technology services and Orientation & Mobility services.  RCIL also has available the Anita Casey Memorial Medical Equipment Loan Program and Build a Ramp Program which are made possible with funding from Osage County.  RCIL also contracts to provide Financial Management Services for several of the Medicaid waiver programs and Transitional Living Services for individuals that have experienced Traumatic Brain Injury and more.

The memorial donations made by Mrs. Peterson’s loved ones were used toward the purchase of a 27 foot portable, accessible ramp (similar to the one pictured below) that is now available for temporary loan (up to 90 days with an option to extend an additional 90 days), free of charge to assist residents of Osage County while rehabilitating from illness or injury or until a permanent ramp can be built. RCIL has recently received several inquiries for such ramp and recognizes that having a temporary ramp may expedite discharge from a hospital or nursing facility.  Call RCIL at 785-528-3105 to inquire about the ramp or other programs and services.

Peterson and Ramp

 

RCIL will be hosting two low vision fairs in March.  The fairs will be on March 6th in Baxter Springs and March 7th in Garnett.  Both fairs will be located at the town’s library and will be from 1:00-3:00pm.

During that time Mandy Smith, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, will present on iKan-RCIL’s program and services and will introduce representatives from other agencies that serve the low vision/blind population.  In Baxter Springs, the agencies will include: Assistive Technology for Kansans (ATK), Audio Reader, and Kansas Talking Books.  Garnett’s line up will be NanoPac, Audio Reader, and Kansas Talking Books.  Along with presenting on available resources, agencies will also have demonstrations of equipment for hands-on opportunities.

If you have questions feel free to call Mandy Smith (785) 528-3105 or email her at Amanda.smith@rcilinc.org

Fliers are located below with the address of both locations.

Baxter Springs LV Fair 2018Baxter Springs LV Fair 2018

Resource Center for Independent Living, Inc. is hiring!

 Transitional Living Specialists – Seeking to hire TLS to work one-on-one with individuals who has experienced a Traumatic Brain Injury to teach independent living skills in the following communities:  Colony, Fort Scott, LaCygne, Eureka, Topeka, and Lawrence.  These are all part-time positions.      

 Payroll Clerk – As one of the largest Financial Management Service providers in the state, RCIL processes weekly payroll for over 1000 home care workers.  The payroll clerk assists with processing payroll information including data entry and communicating mainly by telephone with homecare workers and their employers.  Previous payroll experience preferred.  Excellent customer service skills required.  This is a full-time position with competitive pay and excellent benefits.    

 Assistive Technology Delivery & Pick Up Specialist – Support the Kansas Equipment Exchange Program by picking up and delivering assistive technology & medical equipment to people with disabilities in NE Kansas. Experience with data entry preferred.  Excellent customer service and telephone communication skills required.  Must have a valid Kansas Driver’s License and  be able to drive company vehicles without restrictions. Also, be able to lift and carry a minimum of 75 pounds and to team-lift/carry, push or pull up to 200 lbs. as well as frequent bending, kneeling and reaching is required.  This is a permanent, part-time (20 hours per week/up to 1000 per calendar year) position.   

Team players, with an excellent work ethic should fill out an RCIL application or submit their resume (including references) to hr@rcilinc.org.   People with disabilities are encouraged to apply!

 

Technology, you have to love it!  Below is a link to a YouTube video from Microsoft about their new Seeing AI (artificial intelligence) app and glasses.  I am truly amazed at the information this is able to give those without sight.  The doors it could open are unlimited!

Seeing AI Video