Archived VISIONS Status Updates

Update 6: May 11, 2020

During these uncertain times, we remain committed to serving the needs of participants who are blind and visually impaired, living in all boroughs of NYC, Long Island, Westchester, Rockland County, and several counties in New Jersey.

We are proud to provide the following updates regarding our continued vision rehabilitation services during the pandemic:

  • VISIONS main office on Greenwich Street reopened on July 6th, 2020 with a skeleton staff to maintain social distancing. Beginning August 3rd, 2020, we are offering in-person programs and services for families of children who are blind or visually impaired at VISIONS Center on Blindndess (VCB), and training for youth and adults who are blind or visually impaired at the Vocational Rehabilitation Center (VRC) in Rockland County.
  • VISIONS general Vision Rehabilitation Services have resumed in person, offered by certified professional staff including in-home Vision Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT), and Orientation & Mobility (O&M) training in our entire coverage area.
  • VISIONS Center on Aging staff continues to offer remote virtual classes and support groups for center participants. Classes include chair exercises, seated Zumba, and themed support groups, allowing participants to remain social, while social distancing. We are also continuing to supply vouchers for free breakfast meals at the Malibu Diner for center participants. Additionally, center staff are regularly communicating with over 350 older adult participants and performing safety checks. We anticipate offering in-person services in October 2020 if the pandemic does not worsen in New York City.
  • VISIONS Social Work Counseling services are offered both in-person and remotely by our licensed social workers (phone or video call) by appointment only.
  • VISIONS benefits counselors are remotely assisting participants with tasks including coordinating home-delivered meals (if qualified); locating pick up food sites; locating testing sites; and understanding economic impact payment information, medical services, and other benefits related to COVID-19.
  • VISIONS unpaid Caregiver Support Program continues to offer training and support for unpaid caregivers of older adults, if one or both are blind or visually impaired.
  • VISIONS Department of Workforce Development and VISIONS Department of Youth Services are continuing to provide remote work readiness and pre-vocational skills workshops utilizing video conferencing. Participants have been able to meet virtually “face-to-face”, share files, and conduct enhanced discussions with guest speakers. We recently helped four legally blind people get jobs despite the pandemic.
  • VISIONS Assistive Technology instructors have been providing remote (and in special cases, at-home) technology assistance for our staff and participants, all while maintaining social distancing and safety guidelines.

Our success with remote programming is thanks to our team of dedicated staff, who have been flexible in the way they teach, and quickly adaptable to new technology. We are very happy to report that the agency has had no staff layoffs or salary reductions. Our ability to continue serving our diverse population, as well as our commitment to protecting our staff during these unprecedented times, is only made possible through the support of individual donors as well as foundations. To learn more about VISIONS, please follow us on social media:

Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram  |  LinkedIn

Update 5: May 5, 2020

During these uncertain times, we remain committed to serving the needs of participants who are blind and visually impaired, living in all boroughs of NYC, Long Island, Westchester, Rockland County, and several counties in New Jersey.

While our physical offices remain closed, we are working hard to offer programs and services in a format that is both convenient, and accessible to our participants.

In the recent weeks following self-isolation orders:

  • VISIONS Social Work services are being offered remotely by our licensed social workers (either by phone, text, or video call). Social workers are assisting participants with tasks including coordinating home-delivered meals (if qualified); locating pick up food sites; locating testing sites; and understanding economic impact payment information, medical services, and other benefits related to COVID-19. Additionally, VISIONS is offering remote health and wellness classes including chair exercises, seated Zumba, and themed support groups, allowing participants to remain social, while socially distancing.
  • VISIONS Department of Workforce Development, and VISIONS Department of Youth Services have facilitated remote work readiness and pre-vocational skills workshops utilizing video conferencing, allowing participants to meet “face-to-face”, share files, and conduct enhanced discussions with guest speakers.
  • VISIONS Center on Aging has facilitated remote activities over Google Hangouts and by phone, allowing participants with varying levels of technical skill to enjoy these activities. Additionally, staff from VISIONS Center on Aging are communicating with participants and performing safety checks.
  • VISIONS Assistive Technology instructors have been providing remote, and in some cases, at-home technology assistance to both staff and students, while maintaining social distancing and safety guidelines.

Our success with remote programming is thanks, in large part to our team of dedicated staff, who have been flexible in the way they teach, and quickly adaptable to new technology. We are very happy to report that the agency has had no staff layoffs. Our ability to continue serving our diverse population, as well as our commitment to protecting our staff during these unprecedented times, is only made possible through your generous support. To learn more about VISIONS remote services, please follow us on social media:

Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram  |  LinkedIn

Update 4: March 31, 2020

As of March 30th, VISIONS Center on Aging, located at VISIONS at Selis Manor, is no longer offering to-go meals for participants to pick up. Participants should call Diana Cruz, Director of VISIONS Center on Aging at 646-486-4444 ext. 215 if they require any assistance with requesting home-delivered meals, or updating us on any dietary preferences. 

Update 3: March 24, 2020

Our lights may be off, but our dedicated staff is still hard at work providing necessary services to our youth and adult participants! Here is what is happening right now:

  • Our Youth Services staff are conducting remote Pre-Vocational Training to participants referred by the NYS Commission for the Blind.
  • Our Workforce Department staff are working remotely with job seekers and work readiness participants referred by the NYS Commission for the Blind.
  • Our Assistive Technology Trainers are offering remote Technology help for college students and public school students with visual impairments referred by the NYS Commission for the Blind.
  • Our social workers are providing remote counseling for our participants referred to by the NYS Commission for the Blind.
  • Our Rehabilitation Department staff are completing assessments and benefits counseling over the phone.

All three VISIONS service sites in NYS are closed to visitors, participants, and staff until further notice. Emails and voicemails are being answered. Info@visionsvcb.org is being monitored and messages through the website are being answered. We are also proud to announce we have had no staff layoffs.

Our commitment to serving our diverse population, even during these troubling times is only made possible through your generous support. Any donation you can give will allow our staff to continue providing these services remotely and safely to our participants. Visit https://www.visionsvcb.org/donate to make a donation today!

Update 2a: March 23, 2020

Please see the table below for dates and times VISIONS at Selis Manor will be open on the week of March 23rd. For questions about VISIONS at Selis Manor, call 646-486-4444.

VISIONS Center on Aging Meal Schedule:

March 23: VISIONS Center on Aging is open from 12:00 – 1:00 PM
March 24: VISIONS Center on Aging is open from 12:00 – 1:00 PM
March 25 and Beyond: VISIONS at Selis Manor is Closed and will remain closed until further notice. By this time, participants will have their meals safely delivered to their homes.

Please check back daily for further updates about VISIONS Center on Aging. We are following the directives of the NYC Department for the Aging, as well as city and state officials/ We appreciate your cooperation.

Update 1: March 17, 2020

To protect our participants and staff at VISIONS Center on Blindness (VCB) and our Vocational Rehabilitation Center (VRC), we will be suspending all programming as of Wednesday, March 18th.  For questions about VCB and VRC, call 845-354-3003.

Important Notice

To protect our participants and staff, we have canceled all programs at VISIONS at Selis Manor. Two meals a day from Monday through Friday will be available for pick up by tenants of Selis Manor and for participants that can get to the building to pick up their meals. Meals cannot be eaten in the auditorium to minimize crowds and maintain social distancing. For questions about VISIONS at Selis Manor, call 646-486-4444.

VISIONS Greenwich Street office will be open with a small rotating staff. All participant programs at Greenwich Street are canceled. Please call before coming to the Greenwich office: 212-625-1616.

VISIONS Center on Blindness (VCB) and the Vocational Rehabilitation Center (VRC) programs in Rockland County are currently operating with restricted visiting. Please call before visiting VCB: 845-354-3003.

Depending on your location and staff availability, certain rehabilitation and social work services will continue to be offered primarily by phone. Home instruction will be limited. Please call VISIONS at 212-625-1616 if you have not been contacted by your rehabilitation instructor or social worker about suspended or continued services.

You can email VISIONS at info@visionsvcb.org. We will answer your phone calls and emails as quickly as we can. Most staff will be working from home. We are resilient. We will manage, and survive this crisis. Thank you for your support and understanding.

– Nancy D. Miller, Executive Director/CEO

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