Last Updated on July 7, 2023 by Lori Pace
Are you or someone you know visually impaired or blind? Navigating life with these challenges can be difficult, but resources are available to help.
One such resource is grants specifically designed for visually impaired adults and the blind. These grants can provide financial assistance for various needs, such as assistive technology, education, and immediate needs.
In this article, we will explore some of the grants that are available to you, the eligibility requirements, and how to apply. By the end, you will have a comprehensive understanding of the grants that can help you live a more independent and fulfilling life.
Members of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) & Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU)
The collaboration of Members of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU) provides exclusive grants and financial assistance programs to eligible disabled members, including those who are visually impaired.
To qualify for the loan program, you must first join AAPD and pay a membership fee of $15. From then on, register at DCU to get the opportunity to enjoy various services intended to support and assist disabled people and their families.
The Assistive Technology Fund, or ATF, is specifically designed to provide assistance related to various adaptive devices and technology-related assistance to persons with vision impairment. This program is open to all legally blind U.S. residents. The application process is online based.
The ATF’s cash grants can be used towards purchasing adaptive devices at a reduced cost. The organization can cover up to 50% of the device’s suggested retail price.
The National Assistive Technology Technical Assistance Partnership (NATTAP) provides valuable resources and support to individuals with visual impairments, offering assistance in accessing and utilizing adaptive devices and technology for improved daily functioning and academic success.
The NATTAP is a state-wide program that is crucial in enhancing the quality of life for persons with disabilities by helping them navigate through funding opportunities to acquire technology-related assistance.
The International Association of Lions Clubs is a worldwide organization that focuses on helping people with special needs. This non-profit group offers vocational assistance or grants to visually impaired individuals. Grant recipients must be categorized as legally blind to qualify for the program.
If you’re visually impaired and need financial aid or adaptive devices, contact your local Lions Club chapter or the International Association of Lions Clubs directly. Don’t miss the chance to make your educational journey better and improve your life!
Dr. Maureen Powers Quality-of-Life Grant program focuses on supporting legally blind or low-vision individuals aged 21 years and older. Grant recipients must also be permanent residents of California, specifically in the counties of Alameda or Contra Costa.
The program awards eligible applicants up to $5,000 in financial aid. The program is a multi-year grant and may be availed more than once. However, there is a one-year waiting period between applications.
Aside from financial assistance, the QOL program also helps visually impaired people acquire the following supportive devices and services:
- Smartphones and tablets and related training to enhance accessibility
- Braille equipment and Braille training
- Low-vision products, including training
- Other relevant equipment that promotes safety at home
The Ed Cossart Immediate Needs Grant is another grant initiated by the Lions Vision Resource Organization. Unlike QOL, the IN grant is designed to provide financial assistance to individuals facing urgent challenges related to their visual impairments. This grant addresses the immediate but low-cost needs of visually impaired individuals.
Similar to QOL, the Ed Cossart IN program also offers up to $5,000 of emergency funding to 21 years and older residents of Alameda or Contra Costa counties in California.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) are government-funded programs. They provide financial aid to people with visual impairment or blindness. SSI offers cash grants to disabled adults who have limited income and resources.
Meanwhile, SSDI gives benefits to disabled folks who have paid into the Social Security system through prior work. These programs aim for visually impaired individuals to continue to receive financial aid, medical assistance, and other disability benefits while being employed. Thus, helping to improve the quality of life and independence of visually impaired and blind adults further.
Other State-Based Grants for Visually Impaired & Blind
Through the Federal Student Aid Grant Program, blind students can receive financial support to pursue their career goals and eliminate the gap in education. These grant programs provide various types of grants to fund their attendance in colleges, universities, career schools, and other educational institutions.
To apply for these scholarship programs, blind or visually-impaired students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and indicate their interest in receiving aid for the visually impaired. Once approved, you can use the grant funds to cover tuition, books, and other educational expenses.
It’s important to work closely with your college’s financial aid or social service office to learn more details about scholarships that will best cater to your condition. Additionally, if you cannot attend a traditional campus-based program, you may still be eligible for federal aid through a distance education program.
By accessing these grant opportunities, you can pursue an equitable education and open doors to a bright future in education.
Assistive Technology Resource Project Resources
You can tap into a wealth of state-specific resources through the Assistive Technology Resource Project, empowering you to overcome obstacles and achieve your full potential.
The project provides assistance and grants to organizations committed to helping blind and visually impaired students by funding innovative and major projects.
By utilizing these resources, you can access the latest assistive technology and support services that will enable you to excel academically and navigate through your day-to-day journey with confidence.
Visit or check your local Department of Health and Human Services district offices to learn more about various disability grants available in your state.
Eligibility Requirements to Qualify for the Grants
To qualify for grants providing financial aid and help to visually impaired adults and blind people, individuals need to fulfill certain eligibility requirements. These ensure the grants are given to those who really need them, giving equal chances and improving the lives of people with visual impairments.
The eligibility conditions might include factors like:
|Level of Visual Impairment||Checking visual field, acuity, and ability to use assistive technology devices.|
|Educational Attainment||Academic achievements post-secondary level or enrollment in special education programs.|
|Financial Status||Income level and tax deductions for medical expenses related to visual impairment.|
|Employment Status||Vocational assessment or help for individuals looking for a job or career advancement.|
Certain grants or organizations have their own criteria. It is vital for applicants to research and understand these requirements before they apply.
Tip: Consult with appropriate organizations or get advice from disability services offices to comprehend the eligibility conditions better.
How to Apply for Grants for Visually Impaired and Blind
Applications for grants is a straightforward process that involves completing an online application form and submitting any required supporting documents. To make the application process easier, here are some key steps to follow:
- Check eligibility criteria: See if the grant programs meet your requirements.
- Look for grants: Research the grant programs that help people with visual impairments. Check for grants that fit your needs, like tech help, education support, or vocational assistance.
- Gather documents: Collect any documents you need for the application, such as proof of visual impairment, academic achievements, and financial info.
- Fill out forms: Accurately fill out the forms for the grant program, including any extra materials they require.
- Submit application: Send your application either online or by mail before the deadlines for eligibility. Keep a copy for yourself.
- Follow up: Track the progress of your application and contact the grant office if needed.
Some grants offer cash, others offer devices at reduced or no cost. International applications may have different processes and criteria than national ones.
Helpful Tips to Get Approved
Maximize your chances of approval by following these helpful tips.
- Be sure you meet the criteria.
- Gather info and documents needed.
- Submit applications on time for approval.
- Show your achievements and future plans.
- Get help from organizations specializing in such grants.
It’s also worth noting that grants, scholarships, and financial aid for those with visual impairment can provide support and independence in education.
Also, consider contacting the local chapter of service clubs or other community organizations dedicated to helping visually impaired individuals. Their endorsement and support can go a long way in securing approval for your grant application.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can visually impaired individuals apply for multiple grants at the same time?
Yes, visually impaired individuals can apply for multiple grants simultaneously. This increases their chances of receiving funding for various needs and services that can greatly improve their quality of life.
Are there any grants available for visually impaired individuals who are not residents of the United States?
Yes, there are grants available for visually impaired individuals who are not residents of the United States. These grants provide financial assistance for various needs such as education, assistive technology, and vocational training.
Can visually impaired adults who are already employed qualify for the grants?
Yes, visually impaired adults who are already employed can qualify for grants. These grants aim to support individuals in various aspects of their lives, including education, technology, and vocational training.
Are there any grants available for visually impaired adults pursuing higher education or vocational training?
Yes, grants are available for visually impaired adults pursuing higher education or vocational training. These grants can provide financial assistance for tuition, books, and other expenses, making it easier for you to achieve your educational and career goals.
In conclusion, if you’re visually impaired or blind, there are numerous grants and programs available to provide assistance for individuals with disabilities in various aspects of their life.
The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU), and Dr. Maureen Powers Quality-of-Life grant offer much-needed financial assistance and supportive services to enhance your level of independence and productivity.
Additionally, the National Assistive Technology Technical Assistance Partnership (NATTAP) offers grants for assistive technology services.
Moreover, the International Association of Lions Clubs and the federal student aid grant programs can assist you in pursuing vocational or higher education to help you achieve your career goals.
Lastly, the Ed Cossart Immediate Needs Grant (IN) is available for those facing urgent financial needs due to their visual impairment.
By taking advantage of these grants, you can access resources and support to greatly improve your quality of life as a visually impaired adult or blind individual. Don’t hesitate to explore these opportunities and make the most out of the assistance available to you.