Second Sense - AFB Directory Profile

General Information

Second Sense
65 E. Wacker Place
Suite 1010
Chicago, IL 60601-7216
(312) 236-8569 (Local)
(312) 236-8128 (Fax)
info@second-sense.org
http://www.second-sense.org/

Brief Description

Second Sense offers both support and training programs to help our clients regain their confidence and independence. All services are provided by vision rehabilitation professionals and offered individually or in small groups. We provide our clients with the fastest path to begin their new life as an independent adult with vision loss. All of our services are offered free-of-charge to anyone with vision loss: no paperwork, no referrals, and no waiting period. Additionally, we are able to respond quickly and address each client’s immediate needs Our programs in Independent Living Skills, Support Services, Orientation and Mobility, and Adaptive Technology are designed to have a direct and immediate impact on the quality of our clients' lives and to prepare them for more training. Our programs empower our clients, encouraging them to take control of their lives, not become dependent upon our services.

Hours of operation: Mon.-Fri. 8:30 AM-4:30 PM
Clients served on average per year: 750 with direct services; 2,500 with indirect services
Number of staff: 8
Staff description: Second Sense staff is made up of professionals in their fields. Staff are passionate about working with each individual to help them address their immediate, unique needs and realize their personal goals.
Geographic area served: Our direct services are offered in Cook, Lake, DuPage and Will counties. We provide remote services via email and phone nationally.
Publications: Making Sense (monthly cclient newsletter in large print, braille and email formats), Tech Times (quarterly electronic newsletter focused on adaptive technology), Starting and Maintaining a Vibrant Vision Loss Support Group (print and electronic manual)

Staff

Polly Abbott, Director of Rehabilitation Services, (312) 236-8569, polly.abbott@second-sense.org
Kathy Austin, Community Engagement Specialist, (312) 236-8569, kathy.austin@second-sense.org
Rachael Eschbach, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, (312) 236-8569, rachael.eschbach@second-sense.org
David Flament, Manager of Adaptive Technology Services, (312) 236-8569, david.flament@second-sense.org
Cody Froeter, Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapist, (312) 236-8569, cody.froeter@second-sense.org
Brian Hollandsworth, Coordinator of Consumer Product Center, (312) 236-8569, brian.hollandsworth@second-sense.org
Cheryl Megurdichian, Director of Development and Communications, (312) 236-8569, cheryl.megurdichian@second-sense.org
Steven Zelner, Executive Director, (312) 236-8569, steven.zelner@second-sense.org

Services Offered

Services for Adults

  • Assistive Products
    • Our staff will work with you to find the tool you need to perform daily tasks. Products are available for demonstration and sale, including hand-held and electronic magnifiers, low vision aids, large print items, canes, kitchen tools and talking products.
  • Computer Training/Assistive Technology
    • Our computer training classes are for both those with no experience and those seeking to increase their skills. Our comprehensive courses begin with learning the adaptive technology (speech or magnification) and include Word, Excel, Internet and Email. Our one-day classes offer a wide variety of options from advanced word functions to online shopping with speech. Learn to use VoiceOver with the iPhone or iPad, operate the Victor Reader Stream or use NVDA. We also offer Technology Tutors who can assist you by phone, email or in-person. Our TVI classes focus on the skills students are using to keep teachers up to date.
  • Counseling
    • We offers adjustment counseling through both individual and group sessions. Counseling is available by phone.
  • Daily Living Skills/Independent Living Skills Training
    • Our Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapists provide individual and small class training on a variety of daily living skills (using buttons and dials, home safety, sewing, cooking, handwriting, cleaning, personal grooming, dining).
  • Information and Referral
    • Our staff offer their expertise by answering questions about blindness and the services and resources available for people who are blind. We publish, Making Sense, a monthly newsletter with articles pertinent to people who are blind or visually impaired.
  • Low Vision Services
    • Our walk-in product center offers the opportunity to try out the products with staff assistance before you purchase. You can get professional advice about the best product for your needs. Products range from daily living items (kitchen utensils, large print watches, and large print calendars) to magnification.
  • Services for Seniors
    • The Guild has tailored most of its service areas to provide programs that meet the specific needs of seniors.
  • Support Groups
    • Second Sense offers monthly support groups for adjusting to vision loss. See our website for a list of upcoming support group meetings. We also work support group leaders to providing training and education on group facilitation and vision rehabilitation. Vision Exchange offers online resources, a manual loaded with ideas and techniques, and a support group leader listserv with about 90 support group leaders on the list. Visit our website to learn more.
  • Travel/Orientation and Mobility
    • Our Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist will provide training in independent travel to clients in Cook, DuPage and Lake Counties.
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