Carroll Center for the Blind - AFB Directory Profile

General Information

Carroll Center for the Blind
770 Centre Street
Newton, MA 02458-2597
(617) 969-6200 (Local)
(617) 969-6204 (Fax)
(800) 852-3131 (Toll-Free)

Brief Description

The Carroll Center serves the needs of blind and visually impaired persons by providing rehabilitation, skills training, and educational opportunities to achieve independence, self-sufficiency, and self-fulfillment and by educating the public regarding the potential of persons who are blind and visually impaired.

Established in 1936, the Center has pioneered innovative methods for blind persons to gain independence in their homes, in class settings, and in their work places. New and evolving technologies, combined with time-tested adaptive methods, individualized instruction, and personalized therapies developed by the Carroll Center staff, have provided thousands of blind and vision impaired persons with diverse opportunities for success and independent living.

Carroll Tech is a web-based distance learning service intended to assist blind and visually impaired individuals, as well as to train education and rehabilitation professionals. Instruction is offered in access technologies such as screen readers, screen magnifiers, braille embossers, note-takers, and scanners. Each course is comprised of text, videos, exercises, quizzes, and chat sessions.

Hours of operation: Mon.-Fri. 8:30 AM-5:00 PM, weekend and evening courses, recreational programs on weekends, summer programs for children and youth
Clients served on average per year: 3000+
Number of staff: 120 approx
Staff description: Rehabilitation teachers, Orientation and mobility specialists, Teacher of students with Visual Impairments, Technology specialists, Social worker, ophthalmologist, psychologist, occupational therapist, rehabilitation counselor and employment coaches, personal management and independent living instructors, recreation instructors, dorm supervisors
Geographic area served: As a residential facility, we are able to serve consumers from all over the country as well as international clientele who can attend the Center. Our off-campus services extend throughout Massachusetts and beyond state borders.
Publications: Blindness-related publications by staff and alumni; computer training manuals.


Brian Charlson, Director of Computer Training,
Greg Donnelly, President/CEO, (617) 969-6200 309,
Kathy Felt, Director of Admissions, (617) 969-6200 216,
Jennifer Harnish, Director of Rehabilitation,
Janet Perry, Chief Human Resources Officer, (617) 969-6200 223,
Dina Rosenbaum, Chief Program Officer,

Services Offered

Services for Adults

  • Assessment
    • An assessment determines a blind/low vision individuals' current skills functioning in activities of daily living, travel ability, use of remaining vision, information management, personal health care, and adjustment to vision loss.
  • Assistive Products
    • The Carroll Store sells canes, magnifiers, sunglasses, and adapted high and low tech devices for daily living. Available on-line as well at
  • Community Outreach Programs
    • Monthly information days, training for elders at senior centers and presentations at support groups, assistive living facilities are held through out the year.
  • Computer Training/Assistive Technology
    • The Carroll Center Computer training department provides state of the art evaluation, instruction, tech support and guidance on the latest assistive technology and computer devices. Individual, group and distance learning training available
  • Counseling
    • Offers individual, group, and family sessions.
  • Daily Living Skills/Independent Living Skills Training
    • Intensive 12-week courses in independent living (low vision training, personal management, braille, technology, audio devices, orientation and mobility, and sensory development) are offered to consumers who are struggling with vision loss/blindness. A Community Essential skills training just for elders is offered for 2 weeks as well as a mini-training sessions in the community.
  • Employment/Job Training
    • Internship experiences are offered to students in existing programs. Vocational Transition Program for young adults provides independent living and job experience over a 4 month program. Project Search provides on the job training with placement in a nine month program.
  • Low Vision Services
    • Evaluations, training, demonstrations and loans of magnification devices are provided to help consumers find the most productive solutions for low vision.
  • Recreation Services
    • We offer a variety of outdoor enrichment program that often include skiing, skating, camping, sailing, bicycling, hiking. The Carroll Center hosts SailBlind teams nationally and internationally.
  • Services for Seniors
    • Provides functional vision evaluation and demonstration of devices for seniors struggling with vision loss. Intensive rehabilitation training provided for seniors with significant vision loss who are trying to remain independent. Also provides orientation and mobility training in the home and helps in keeping the home environment safe through the recommendation of adaptations. Diabetes self-management program in community settings and on-line course in development (as of Winter/2010-11).
  • Travel/Orientation and Mobility
    • Learning to travel safely with a visual impairment is an important skill for any age. Orientation and Mobility Training provides individuals with skills to travel outside the home safely and confidently. Available for elders just learning to travel around their home; adults commuting to work or college/school age children who need to navigate a campus.
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