FOUNDATION FOR BLIND CHILDREN (FBC)
MISSION: “To provide education, tools and services that enable those with vision loss to achieve greater independence and satisfaction in life.”
VISION: “To have a world where vision loss is a diagnosis, not a disability.”
The Foundation for Blind Children was founded in 1952 by parents of blind children who wanted services for their blind children in Phoenix, instead of having to send them to the State Institution for the Blind in Tucson. The Foundation for Blind Children is the largest non-profit agency of it’s kind in the United States serving the blind and visually impaired of all ages, from birth to currently 102 years old. As the only agency of its kind in Arizona, the Foundation for Blind Children is an essential resource to families and children with blindness or low vision. With three Valley locations (East Valley, West Valley and Central Phoenix), we strive to serve as “the” community’s resource for blind, visually impaired, and multi-handicapped children, adults, and their families. For more information, please visit FBC’s website.
“The generous funding we receive from the DGs primarily supports two programs at FBC: early intervention and infant/preschool.”
-Steve Pawlowski, APR | Director, Communications and Business Development
“The unemployment rate for adult students completing training at FBC is 5% compared to a national unemployment rate of 70% for visually impaired adults. In order for blind adults to have that level of success, the work starts at birth with parents and that’s where we begin. Early intervention is critical to the future success of each blind child as 75% of early learning is visual. During the first five years of life, the brain develops the fastest and is the easiest to train. We work with the family to help establish those pathways in the brain that are necessary for each blind baby to reach their full potential. Our certified teachers of the visually impaired intentionally teach each child concepts that most children learn by imitating what they see others do. Services for infants up to age three are provided in the family home and focus on teaching parents and other caregivers how to motivate their blind baby to learn and grow using their remaining senses (sound, touch or smell),” explains Steve. “Funding from the Delta Gammas supports this program at the Foundation for Blind Children, which serves approximately 200 blind babies and their families each year.”
“The infant/preschool program at FBC is staffed by highly trained and certified teachers of the visually Impaired, who provide instruction to help students compensate for their vision loss. Because of their vision loss, our students must be specifically taught developmental skills that sighted children learn simply by imitating what they see others do. Foundation for Blind Children’s certified teachers and therapists help students reach their full potential and close the developmental gap between them and their sighted peers. We maintain a very low staff to student ratio (1:2) in order to ensure that students receive the individual attention needed to understand concepts without the benefit of vision. This program also provides educational workshops and support groups for the families of our students. Each student has a plan that identifies and addresses all therapy and medical interventions required. FBC therapists and nurses provide approximately 22,500 interventions for students throughout the school year. This program serves approximately 105 students each year.”
DELTA GAMMA FOUNDATION (DGF)
Our dedicated members and friends make the mission of the Foundation possible. How do members live the Delta Gamma motto of “Do Good”? Volunteer service is at the heart of Delta Gamma’s work. Through Service for Sight, Joining Forces, the Golden Anchor Program and community activities, the Foundation supports the philanthropic goals of our members and chapters.
Protecting the gift of sight is one of Delta Gamma’s highest priorities. Through the four schools founded by Delta Gammas, children who are blind or visually impaired learn specialized skills. Our members volunteer countless hours with more than 150 sight related organizations. The Foundation gives annual grants to organizations sharing our Service for Sight mission.