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Agencies and Organizations
This directory was produced by the Perkins Library to assist consumers and professionals in locating services for persons who are blind or visually impaired in Massachusetts. Learn more about the Massachusetts Directory of Agencies.
National Braille Press
88 St. Stephen Street
Boston, MA 02115
Produces low-cost braille books, magazines and tactile products, covering subjects such as computers, cooking, philosophy, children’s print and braille books, women’s issues, news and commentary, grammar and writing. Free print or braille catalog upon request.
National Center for Accessible Media at WGBH (NCAM)
One Guest Street
Boston, MA 02135
Phone: (617) 300-3400
TTY: (617) 300-2489
Fax: (617) 300-1035
NCAM’s mission is to expand access to present and future media for people with disabilities; to explore how existing access technologies may benefit other populations; to represent constituents in industry, policy and legislative circles; and to provide access to educational and media technologies for special needs students.
175 North Beacon Street
Watertown, MA 02472
Founded in 1829, Perkins is a global leader in education for people who are blind, deafblind or visually impaired with additional disabilities. Perkins provides a wide range of programs, services and tools for infants, children and adults who are blind, as well as families, educators and advocates in the U.S.and internationally.
At its historic campus in Watertown, the school offers accredited residential and day programs for students from birth to 22 years who are blind or deafblind, including those with additional disabilities. Programs include academics, arts and music, athletics, physical therapy, prevocational training, independent living skills and more.
Phone: (617) 972-7456
Experts provide independent evaluations of students, age 3 to 22 years, with visual impairments. Students’ strengths and needs are evaluated, so teachers and parents can develop individualized education programs that provide the best possible learning experience for children in public or private schools.
Phone: (617) 972-7432
Weekend, vacation and summer programs give students who are visually impaired an opportunity to develop educational, vocational and independent-living skills, while enjoying recreational activities and spending time with their peers. Students gain self-confidence, insight and friendships for life. Programs are available for elementary through high school students.
Gives vision educators the extra tools and training they need to encourage children who are blind or visually impaired to achieve their maximum potential. Teachers of the visually impaired, early intervention specialists, non-profit and government agency employees can choose from a variety of training seminars, workshops and professional development programs hosted by Perkins.
Perkins Library (Formerly Braille & Talking Book Library)
175 North Beacon Street
Watertown, MA 02472
The Library provides talking books and playback equipment, audio described movies, large print, braille materials and downloadable audio books to individuals unable to read regular print due to a visual, physical, or reading disability. Institutions providing services to individuals with disabilities are also eligible for the program.
Other services include reference, reader advisory services, the Newsline program (telephone-based and online access to daily newspapers), foreign language materials, children and young adult programming and services, and presentations to community groups. Offers several newsletters including Dots & Decibels, PerKIDS and El Narrador (in Spanish); operates a brailler repair program; a CCTV and Perkins Brailler loan program; and has in-house adaptive computer equipment available for borrowers use. Fee-for-service braille production and digital audio recording services are also available.
Sight Loss Services, Inc.
Cape Cod and the Islands
900 Route 134, Town Plaza Building Unit 25
South Dennis, MA 02660
Mailing address: Box 241
South Dennis, MA 02660
(508) 394-3904 or (800) 427-6842 (MA only)
Fax: (508) 398-0792
Provides peer support, information and referral, and home independence training to individuals on Cape Cod and the Islands who are learning to cope and function safely and independently with the loss of vision. Offers support groups and demonstrates adaptive aids. Aids that have been donated are distributed to persons in need for free.
Talking Information Center (TIC)
PO Box 519, 130 Enterprise Drive
Marshfield, MA 02050
TIC is the radio reading service for persons with a print disability in Massachusetts. The following are TIC affiliates that provide access to information to residents with a print disability in their areas:
Audible Local Ledger
Deer Crossing C-14
681 Falmouth Road
Mashpee, MA 02649
Phone: (508) 539-2030 or (877) 255-2260
Fax: (508) 539-2080
Lowell Association for the Blind (LAB/TIC)
169 Merrimack Street, 2nd Floor
Lowell, MA 01852
Phone: (978) 454-5704
Fax: (978) 458-5563
Veterans Administration: Blind Rehabilitation Services Outpatient Clinics
The VA Blind Rehabilitation Service model of care encompasses an array of rehabilitative services, extending from the patient’s home to the local VA care facility, and to regional low vision clinics and lodger and inpatient training programs. The local VA care facility has Visual Impairment Services Team (VIST) Coordinators (case managers) who have responsibility for the coordination of services for visually impaired Veterans and active duty Servicemembers. VIST coordinator duties include providing and/or arranging the provision of appropriate treatment in order to enhance functioning such as making referrals to Blind Rehabilitation Centers, Blind Rehabilitation Outpatient Services, and low vision clinics.
Other VIST coordinator duties include identifying newly identified individuals who have severely disabling visual impairment, providing counseling, problem resolution, arranging a review of benefits and needed services, and conducting educational and outreach programs relating to VIST and blindness. Outpatient low vision rehabilitation clinics are available in each state. Veterans and eligible active duty Servicemembers should contact the VIST Coordinator in the VA facility nearest their home. The VIST coordinator can be contacted through the following facilities:
Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital
200 Springs Road
Bedford, MA 01730
Email contact: Mary.Fardy@va.gov
VA Boston Healthcare System
Brockton Campus 940 Belmont Street
Brockton, MA 02301
Phone: (508) 583-4500 x 63451
Providence VA Medical Center (Cape Cod and the Islands)
830 Chalkstone Avenue
Providence, RI 02908-4799
Phone: (401) 273-7100 x1554
Email contact: Adele.Geringer@va.gov
VA Central MA Healthcare System
Northampton Campus (Springfield, Greenfield, Pittsfield)
421 North Main Street
Leeds, MA 01053
Phone: (413) 483-4040 x 2058
Worcester Plantation Street Clinic (Worcester and Fitchburg)
377 Plantation St. Worcester, MA 01605
Phone: (413) 483-4040 x 6505
Email contact: Kelli.Jarosz@va.gov
Visions of Independence
34 Crest Road Way
Sharon, MA 02067
Occupational therapists provide training in daily living skills to low vision patients. Patients are informed about available resources and programs. In home services are provided and covered by Medicare and other insurance providers.
Worcester Talking Book Library
Worcester Public Library
3 Salem Square
Worcester, MA 01608
Provides digital books, playback equipment, large type books, descriptive DVDs, and print/braille materials to Massachusetts individuals who are unable to read regular print due to a visual, physical, or reading disability. The Worcester Talking Book Library also provides hands-on assistance with the National Library Service (NLS) Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) program; and offers on-site use of adaptive equipment, outreach services and a periodic newsletter.