The Lighthouse Story
In 1985, Mana-Sota Lighthouse for the Blind was created to provide critically needed services to blind and visually impaired individuals in Sarasota and Manatee counties. The concept was only a vision until a group of devoted individuals, who themselves were visually impaired, worked together with area eye specialists and community donors to secure funding and the 501(c)(3) status for the new nonprofit.
While the original intent of the founders of Mana-Sota Lighthouse for the Blind was to provide services to assist blind and visually impaired adults in their daily lives, over the next 35 years, Lighthouse has expanded its service area to include three new counties, incorporate new programs to include children and young adults and updated the services including daily living skills, assistive technology, job skills, access to technology, support groups and many other tools to help clients, with vision loss, maintain their independence and improve their quality of life. Since its inception, our programs and services have reached thousands of children, youth, adults and seniors.
Today, Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center, based in Sarasota, Florida is the only nationally accredited, not-for-profit organization providing rehabilitation training to the blind and visually impaired residing in a five-county region that includes Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto, Charlotte, and Highlands.