An update from key Vision-Aid programs across India in the past quarter [July – September 2022]
With the turn of seasons, we also have the turn of the quarterly program cycle at Vision-Aid.  During the past quarter [July - September 2022], Vision-Aid Resource Centers and Programs had the opportunity to serve 4366 visually impaired persons across India via various programs.
Lighting up the lamp of hope, in Agra on “White Cane Day”
Belated Dussehra greetings and advance greetings for Diwali – the festival of lights. Amid the festive season, did you know that today, October 15th , is “White Cane Awareness Day”, to increase awareness of the use of white canes by the visually impaired to navigate safely. In our Vision-Aid Agra center, this day was celebrated with the distribution of “Smart Canes” to the visually impaired.
Important Information for Event Attendees on July 31 – In-person event and Zoom event
We have a spectacular show waiting for you: “The Jewel of Justice - the saga of Kannagi” on Sunday July 31st, 2022 @ 4 PM US EDT.  Please read this carefully if you are coming to the in-person event in Watertown, MA. (If you are attending the Zoom event, scroll down to the next section for Zoom attendees”
Massachussets Governor’s message for the Vision-Aid event.
We are pleased to share with you a message from Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito for Vision-Aid's upcoming annual event.
Shubham Deshmukh is a stellar example of Vision-Aid’s uniquely talented alumni.
Cordial and articulate, with a zest for adventure, Shubham is an Arts major turned tech buff who has thrived on the skill-broadening exposure brought to him by Vision-Aid’s Digital Accessibility Testing and Training Program. Presently employed at HCL as a Digital Accessibility Tester, Shubham fondly reminisces about the series of events that led him to clinch such a covetable position, and how Vision-Aid made a debut at a crucial juncture in his life.
Vision-Aid Announces its New Leadership Team for 2022-23

LEXINGTON, MA–Vision-Aid, a non-profit organization serving the visually impaired, announced several notable additions to its leadership team for 2022-23.

This year’s 100% volunteer leadership team includes its 15-member Board of Directors (BOD), 15-member Board of Advisors (BOA), and 4-member Council of Ambassadors, which provides leadership in the area of community engagement, inclusion and advocacy, with a special focus on youth.

The combined power team includes an eminently qualified and diverse range of members drawn from a wide range of fields including Ophthalmology, Optometry, Occupational Therapy, Finance, Technology, Health, Management, Academia and Law.

Meet the dream team behind “The Jewel of Justice”

Vision-Aid’s annual dance productions have become a New England tradition of their own – a remarkable event that the entire community looks forward to with anticipation. This year’s show comes to audiences in a hybrid mode - allowing viewers to choose watching the show in person at a live screening or virtually from the comfort of their homes on July 31st, 2021 at 4 PM US EST, while still preserving the creative, dazzling flavor which have set these shows apart in a category of their own.

While COVID-19 continues to pose challenges, the innovative team leading this year’s effort is finding creative ways to make the show as memorable and vibrant as ever.

The event also aspires to raise much-needed funds for the visually impaired in India – a community which has been especially hard hit by the fallout from the pandemic, at all levels.

For more details of the show, to buy tickets, or to become a sponsor, please visit www.VisionAid.org/event

AI-powered Smart Vision Glasses for the blind launched in Vision-Aid center at Delhi.
Amid the searing heat wave in Delhi, which has been in the recent news, a cooler piece of news is that Smart Vision Glasses (SVG) 2.0, the new AI-powered device for the visually impaired made its debut this week in Delhi and is causing some waves. Vision-Aid and its partner SHG Technologies launched Smart Vision Gen 2.0 in Delhi at the Dr. Shroff’s Charity Eye Hospital (SCEH) in Delhi, on May 17th, at an event which was well attended despite the ongoing heat wave.
Smart Vision Launch event a huge success
National Launch of Smart Vision 2.0 On January 11th, 2022 a major all-India seminar was held on the theme of “Technology-based devices for persons who are visually impaired”. The event was jointly organized by the Aravind Eye Hospital and Vision-Aid and was attended by over 60 participants representing eye hospitals and NGOs from different parts of India. The keynote sessions was presented by Aravind Eye Hospital, L.V. Prasad Eye Inst., Vision-Aid and Smart Health Global Technologies – Vision-Aid’s partner who is bringing the first AI-powered , affordable, India-made Smart glasses to the Indian market. The event covered the role of assistive technology for the visually impaired, with a focus on the new AI-powered smart glasses, and a formal launch of Smart Vision Gen 2.0. Vision-Aid is pleased to share the keynote talks and the full session recordings below.
Smart Vision Gen 2.0 launched!

Smart Vision is a revolutionary, affordable, innovative, made-in-India, AI-powered "Smart Glass", the first of its kind brought to India by Vision-Aid in partnership with SHG Technologies of Bengaluru, in collaboration with Aravind Eye Hospital in Madurai and with the financial support of the Palakurthi Foundation of USA.

Short Video Overview of Smart Vision Demo (~30 seconds video):

Smart Vision Testimonials by blind users in pilot (~2.5 minutes)  

Click here to download brochure.

For more information, or to obtain this device, please email: info@visionaid.org 

For Some Touching is believing!
Touching is believing! For children who are visually impaired, and who have never seen a tree or a star or a science diagram, the world of tactile diagrams and tactile STEM books opens up a whole new universe, using the sense of touch. Vision-Aid is proud to partner with Raised Lines Foundation (RLF) a start-up coming out of IIT-Delhi to provide high quality tactile Braille books to children in blind schools across India replacing traditional Braille books which were lacking diagrams. We are grateful to Meetu & Ram Gupta Foundation of Boston, and several other donors for their generous support for this program.
Vision-Aid’s Spoken English Program Graduation Ceremony Announced.
Vision-Aid invites you to an upcoming graduation ceremony to celebrate the graduation of the visually impaired students who have successfully completed Vision-Aid’s challenging Spoken English Intermediate program. Students have worked closely with Vision-Aid's program team to complete this intensive training program successfully, resulting in significant improvement in their English speaking skills and confidence in communicating clearly.
Smart phones – a major enabler for the visually impaired!
Vision-Aid and Trees For Life India are joining hands to provide life-changing Smart-phone technology to visually impaired from under-privileged backgrounds. In 2021 , we started with a pilot which covers ten locations, and the results have been phenomenal. About the program Smart phone companies have poured a lot of money to pack smart technology into today's devices and there are many innovative apps (including AI based apps) which can totally transform the life of a blind or visually impaired user. Our dedicated volunteers and team members in US and India have been hard at work, coordinating the logistics of this multi-location rollout.
Third batch of Digital Accessibility Testing Program students graduate!
In 2020, Vision-Aid launched the “Vissa Sahadeva Rao and Kamala Vissa Vision-Aid Center for Digital Accessibility Testing & Training” thanks to support from the family of the generous benefactors. The center has already trained 3 batches of visually impaired students in advanced DAT skills with a an intensive , rigorous 6-month program from the Dequeue University in the US, which offers the leading global certification program for DAT training. All students have successfully been certified by Dequeue and several have gone on to secure jobs in the industry as well as work in-house in the Vision-Aid DAT incubator.
Vision-Aid and Perkins India teams launch door to door screening in Agra
Vision-Aid is delighted to see the impact of the partnership between Vision-Aid India and Perkins India to identify children with Multiple Disabilities and Vision Impairment (MDVI) in Agra, Uttar Pradesh India. Under project IDI , Identification and Intervention, door-to-door screening of 338 children with disabilities was carried out. This work was overseen by the project team of trained special educators and CBR workers from Khandoli block. Many more villages will be targeted in the coming weeks and months.
A long distance relationship that is thriving!
As we look back at 2021 there are many bright spots to celebrate amid the dark clouds of COVID. One of the brightest spots was - Vision-Aid's Digital Accessibility Testing and Training Center (DATTC). This is one of Vision-Aid's most successful initiatives - Truly a Win-Win-Win-Win for all invovled!
Vision-Aid Holds Meet & Greet with the Agra, India Center
A meet and greet event with the Vision-Aid program at the Agra center was held on 18th Decemeber EST. This ceneter is run by Vision-Aid with the support from Vivek and Vandana Sharma foundation. The Agra center works with the local blinds schools and other organizations in Agra, India to offer a range of services to the visually impaired.
St.Joseph’s Blind School, Madurai, onboards to Project Spring Board
Helen Keller once said, “The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision”. Doubly blessed are those who have both sight and vision and help to break the barriers to learning for the blind. Ms. Ranga Geetha of Millbury MA is one such visionary. Celebrating her 72nd birthday on 19th November, 2021, in a very special and meaningful way – by making a commitment to help improve the welfare of visually impaired students in a blind school in Madurai, India, by giving them the gift of technology and learning through her support of Vision-Aid’s Project Spring Board. Through her gift, Ms. Ranga Geetha is “adopting” one of the blind schools in Vision-Aid’s “Project Spring Board” network - St. Joseph's Blind School in Madurai, Tamil Nādu.
Update December 2021: Vision-Aid joins hands with RLF to improve access to STEM
Vision-Aid has joined hands with Raised Line Foundation (RLF), a startup coming out of IIT-Delhi, to improve access to STEM education with tactile braille books for students with visual impairment. Currently most of the braille books available to blind students do not have diagrams and other rich content which makes science and math education more easily understandable and accessible to blind students.The new initiative introduces much improved, quality of STEM books with tactile diagrams and rich content and helps to level the playing ground for them to compete with their sighted counterparts in regular schools.
Vision-Aid COVID Response for the Visually Impaired in India
Life for people with Visual Impairment in India, has been very challenging during the recent wave of COVID. In consultation with many Vision-Aid partners, stakeholders and beneficiaries, Vision-Aid is announcing a new COVID Response Program for the Visually Impaired. Here are the details. .

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Vision-Aid At A Glance!

Vision-Aid Course Catalog

Vision-Aid Model