Grantee submission by: Martha Parisian, Executive Director

How did the funding or non-monetary support you received from the Foundation impact your organization and/or the community?

The support of the Moses Taylor Foundation allowed our organization to increase our community outreach and education efforts so more adults with low vision learned about our program. We provide services through the E.A.R.S. for Eyes program. All our services are free. Our mission is to provide vision rehabilitation training and counseling to adults with vision impairments so they can continue to live independent productive lives despite their diminished vision. No designation of legal blindness is required. The program elements are 1) an extensive and ongoing community outreach effort, 2) the use of free self-help audio lessons which teach the normal daily living activities that have become difficult due to vision loss, and 3) our toll-free client counseling telephone center which does initial client intake and provides counseling support.

Share a quote or anecdotal story from a client or employee of your organization that illustrates the impact of your work.

Frank F. developed macular degeneration. As the condition worsened, he became depressed and spent most of his time sitting and listening to television. He even refused to attend his granddaughter’s upcoming wedding. His doctor suggested he contact E.A.R.S. for Eyes. He spoke with our vision counselor and received our audio lessons. He enthusiastically stated, “Over and over I listened. Sometimes in the middle of the night I’d wake up all stressed and I’d listen, they calmed me down.” Several months later at his granddaughter’s wedding, he walked her down the aisle.

What do you most want the community to know about your work and/or what excites you most about the future of your organization?

We want an increasing number of individuals in the community to know about the E.A.R.S. for Eyes program, that our services are free, available to any adult with vision problems, and no designation of legal blindness is required.