Inspirational True Stories of Our Clients

These are a selection of stories written by staff members at the Lighthouse of Collier. Our team members develop unique and special relationships with each client, which is reflected in this retelling of each clients’ successes.

Meet Mary

Mary lost her vision about ten years ago from a car accident and complications of diabetes. During the last ten years, Mary had to move home to her mother’s and learn life from scratch. Due to many various reasons, Mary struggled the first few years and had a few setbacks.

Since I met Mary about three and a half years ago, she has completely changed. She is a strong independent woman who decided enough was enough and took charge of her life. She put a renewed sense of self into learning all she can learn not only from the Lighthouse of Collier, but from the Florida Division of Blind Services and other sources. She no longer lets her vision loss define her.

Mary has taken charge of her life and in doing so, Mary now is back in the workforce and just recently moved out of her mother’s place into her own apartment with a roommate.

iPhone

Meet William

I started working with William from the very first day I began as an instructor for the Lighthouse of Collier. William has been totally blind now for a few years. He participates in many different group classes provided from the Lighthouse such as: iOS class where we provide instruction on using iPhones, weekly support groups, history club and book club as well as spending time with me once per week going over his iPhone.

Read Full Story

Portable CCTV with OCR

Meet Dan

Dan is a 78-year old client of the Lighthouse of Collier. He sought out the services of the Lighthouse because he was having trouble reading. He has hereditary cataracts in addition to glaucoma.

His vision impairment was affecting his activities of daily living. But, what upset him the most was how difficult it had become for him to read print. He is an elder in his church. His greatest passion is teaching the Bible and providing sound guidance regarding its interpretation. In order to accomplish his ministry, he spends many hours studying history and theology. He had a CCTV, and magnifiers that were supplied to him by the instructor. However, these low vision devices were not helping him to continue his studies to the extent that he needed. His eyes would become too tired.

Read Full Story

Meet Rosa

I called Rosa today to offer a home visit – training had been on hold due to her other health and family commitments.  Rosa appreciated the offer as she was having a particularly hard day coping with her vision loss and managing her daily tasks. Rosa expressed feeling overwhelmed and frustrated. She needed to talk. After listening and empathizing with her situation, I suggested that she resume her attendance with the weekly support group- to share her frustrations with her peers. However, Rosa had already been attending on a weekly basis and excitedly rattled off accolades about several members who helped her in their own special way (their names have been changed to protect the group’s privacy).

Read Full Story

Euphonium Instrument

Meet James

Lighthouse of Collier started a music braille program and invited James to participate. James recently experienced the aha! moment of reading basic braille notes and playing them on a piano. He begins band camp next week and has already obtained copies of his print music to begin the process of translation to braille.

Read Full Story

Meet Linda

Linda is an older blind client in her seventies living with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) and age related macular degeneration (AMD). Linda lives alone in a condo in a 55 and older community. She stated that she never realized how often she got help from others until it was no longer available.

Read Full Story

Meet Jake

The Lighthouse of Collier received a grant about 6 months ago to purchase iPads for the children to use.  This is a story about how the use of an iPad has impacted one of our children.

 

Jake is a six year old boy living with severe Cortical Visual Impairment.  Due to CVI, he displays trouble visually attending to objects for very long, tracking, and understanding visual information presented to him.

 

 

Read Full Story

man holding cell phone to his eyes displaying a pair of women's eyes, picture has the words, lend your eyes to the blind

Meet Mark

In the short time I have been working for Lighthouse Of Collier, I have had the honor of working with quite a few wonderful people. 

I have been working with Mark for a little over a month on having him get to know his iPhone by using only voiceover and not struggling to use his vision. We have been going over opening and closing apps, navigating those apps, utilizing Siri in making phone calls and sending text messages and recently, we have started downloading and using Apps such as Be My Eyes and Seeing AI. Mark is very quick at learning each item I send his way and even enjoys the little homework projects I give him! He is very excited that he can communicate with family and friends again without having to ask for help in doing all of these things. Great job Mark!

MaxiAids catalog

Meet Julie

Julie is a daughter of a Senior who is visually impaired and lives in Rhode Island.  Julie lives in Naples and was researching ways to make her father’s phone usage more accessible. She had explained that her father has been having trouble with seeing the numbers on his phone and always misses phone calls because he can’t seem to see where to press/ tap.

Julie mentioned that her father lives in Assisted living and that are unfortunately still in a lockdown. I had asked her if her father was perhaps considering moving to Naples.

Read Full Story

picture of colored braille legos

Meet Aaron

Aaron is a four year old boy living in Immokalee who has a progressive eye condition that has resulted in congenital cataracts in both eyes.  Upon our first meeting, it was clear that he would be a Braille reader in the future so we spent much time over the past year working on Pre-Braille skills, including tactual discrimination.  He made a lot of progress over that time.

Now he is beginning to work on the Braille alphabet which has proven to be a challenge.  We have had a hard time finding ways to make the Braille alphabet fun and engaging for Aaron so he wants to focus and work on it. 

Read Full Story

More Stories

Purchase Seeing Beyond Blindness

If you would like to own one of these cocktail table books, please donate a suggested selling price of $35.00 to Lighthouse of Collier and we will send you one straight away.

Lighthouse of Collier dedicated the book to Art Bookbinder, a man who could see beyond blindness. He was a great friend and leader. May he rest in peace. August 1942 – April 2020.

Order Now