1 Low Vision Enhancement Center: The Low Vision Enhancement Center is our largest and fastest growing service. The Low Vision Enhancement is not a clinical setting, but an evaluation and resource center. As the number of individuals with low vision has grown, more low vision services are necessary and we are in the process of expanding services to become a clinical setting. An averages of 3500 patients pass through the Low Vision Enhancement Center each year. Receiving low vision services allows our clients to continue with the quality of life they merit. There are two eye doctors that volunteer their time to provide the evaluations. On staff we have a Certified Orientation and Mobility/Low Vision Therapist, along with 2 highly trained staff that assists the eye doctors. Referrals come from ophthalmologists or optometrists in the regional area, and through other service agencies or hospitals. No client is turned away from receiving services. The Low Vision Center serves children and adult clients.
2 Letha Dangerfield Children’s Braille lending library: Volunteer workers assist with maintaining the library. We can create modified library books for children, too. The library consists of books and educational materials in Braille and for children, adults and their families. Through this program we are able to provide limited instruction into braille reading and writing skills for those individuals assisting braille readers in the area.
3 Joplin Service Club of the Blind: The JAB facility also serves as a meeting place for the Joplin Service Club for the Blind. The Service Club has an average of 60 members and meets each Tuesday at the facility for lunch. Throughout the year the club attends various social activities. The number of members has increased with the addition of the Low Vision Center.
4 JAB Support Groups: Adult and Children Support Groups have members who are visually impaired, and family members who rotate as their differing needs are met. The groups meet monthly at the JAB facility for educational meetings and activities. The Support Groups provide educational assistance to the blind and visually impaired in the area. This group is assisted by Rehabilitation Service for the Blind.
5 Transportation: Without transportation being provided, the majority of clients traveling to the Joplin Association for the Blind for needed services would find it to be cost prohibitive. Two mini buses and a van, operated by volunteer drivers, are available to help our clients attend activities and programs sponsored by JAB.
6 Referral Service: Early on the Joplin Association for the Blind established its role to provide more information for families and the community regarding blindness or low vision questions. JAB and the Low Vision Enhancement Center works closely with other agencies and eye care doctors in the community to provide quality referral services. Ongoing assistance is given to family members of our clients. Questions are answered in the community regarding services and assistance, and awareness to the needs of individuals with low vision or blindness through presentations given to other service agencies, organizations and clubs, to explain programs offered by the Joplin Association for the Blind and Low Vision Center as well as the services available through state rehabilitation centers, Prevention of Blindness, Wolfner Library, Lions Club, and area schools.