Holiday Gifts for Friends and Family with Visual Impairments by Steve Kelley, CVRT

Iris Network Large Print Calendar for 2012

Iris Network Large Print Calendar for 2012, $10.95. Call Terri at 207-774-6273 to order

With Thanksgiving officially behind us, many will be focusing on Winter Holidays and gift-giving. If there is a friend or family member in your life with low vision or blindness, some of the resources below may offer a few suggestions for gifts that you hadn’t thought of, or didn’t know where to purchase.First, because this author works for the Iris Network in Portland Maine, The Iris Network offers two great stocking stuffers directly from the agency, a Large Print 2012 Calendar, and Bert Silverman’s Book, Bert’s Eye View: Coping With Macular Degeneration, in large print. Silverman, a businessman in Portland Maine, published his book in 1997 at the age of 84. Either the calendar or Bert’s Eye View is sold for $10.95 and may be purchased by calling Terri at the Iris Network, 207-774-6273.


Bert's Eye View Coping with Macular Degeneration

Bert's Eye View Coping With Macular Degeneration by Bert Silverman, $10.95. To order, call Terri at 207-774-6273.

For a Braille Calendar at no cost, call the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) at 410-659-9314 or use their online shopping basket.

One of the suggestions offered by Dr. Bill Takeshita and Julian Vargas on the podcast Great Holiday Gifts-2011 (Council of Citizens With Low Vision International Lectures
) is a mini Maglite for loved ones with low vision. This small light will easily fit in a pocket, and has an adjustable focused light beam or a wide-angle beam. Like all Maglites it is manufactured in the USA and available locally or through Amazon.comfor about $10.Bill Spark’s of Bill’s Old Time Radio Store is one of the presenter’s in this years annual Accessible World Tek Talk’s Podcast Stocking Stuffers, a two-part series. One of many gift ideas at Bill’s Old Time Radio Store are recordings of old-time radio episodes, compiled on CD. CDs are $5.99 each and will come with a Braille label if requested. For example, 64 episodes of the Green Hornet with 29 hrs. of play time on one CD is $5.99! For more information by phone call 317-783-4233 between the hours of 9 and 5 Eastern time.

Both podcasts of Tek Talk, Stocking Stuffers I ( and Stocking Stuffers II( is available from the Accessible World Archives at
For more great ideas, the American Foundation for the Blind Access World Holiday Gift Guide is available online at and covers gift ideas for high-tech users and no-tech users. If you use one of the Apple devices, there’s an app for the holiday issue too. Search for “AccessWorld” at the iTunes App Store.

If you have a gift suggestion, please forward it along to Have a great Holiday Season.

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