The Lighthouse has limited the number of individuals physically in our office as part of our COVID-19 response, however we continue to actively work with our clients remotely and by appointment. Please email us(opens in new window) or call +1 941-359-1404 for information.

+1 941-359-14047318 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34243
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Lighthouse Celebrates VRT Week

Vision Rehabilitation Therapist Appreciation Week, April 11-17, 2021

Jean walks with her guide dog

SARASOTA, Fla. – April 7, 2021 – Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center will observe
Vision Rehabilitation Therapist Appreciation Week, April 11-17, 2021 while also commemorating Anne Sullivan’s birthday, on April 14, 1866. Anne Sullivan, a pioneer of the vision rehabilitation profession, was the teacher who worked closely with Helen Keller, to develop the skills Keller would later use as an international lecturer and advocate for individuals with vision and hearing loss. 

Sullivan, a graduate of the Perkins School for the Blind, began working with 7 year old Helen, in 1887, as a Home Teacher, the original occupational title for the profession now called Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT). Today, most VRTs often hold a Master’s level education, and additional national certification (CVRT) to meet established professional standards. For more than a century, as Home Teachers, Rehab Teachers, and now Vision Rehabilitation Therapists, VRTs provided the primary rehabilitation skills training for individuals experiencing blindness or vision loss. VRTs work with clients on:

• adaptive daily living skills;
• communication (including braille when needed);
• low vision devices;
• using assistive technology (AT) like computer and tablet screen readers or screen magnifiers;
• adaptive leisure activities and sports.

Most often, clients are adults who have experienced an acquired vision loss through diseases such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetes, etc.  Referrals may come from doctors, or clients may refer themselves through local, state or nonprofit agencies. Lighthouse VRT services are provided at NO COST to individuals in all its programs for children, teens, adults and seniors. 

“Our vocational rehabilitation therapists are heroes at the Lighthouse,” said Lisa J. Howard, CFRE and CEO. “The Lighthouse provides critical services and support to individuals with vision loss and our certified staff ensures that clients receive the best training and care possible to maintain their independence. We honor our certified instructors and the work they do every day!”

To learn more about Lighthouse’s programs and services, offered at NO COST to individuals affected by vision loss, please visit www.LighthouseEducationCenter.org or contact Terri Medina, terri.medina@LighthouseEducationCenter.org or 941-359-1404.

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About the Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center: Our mission is to educate and empower those affected by vision loss so they may enjoy happy, healthy and independent lives. Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center is the only nationally accredited, non-profit agency providing rehabilitation training to blind and visually impaired individuals of all ages (children through seniors) in five Florida counties including Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, Highlands and DeSoto.