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Family and Social Services Administration

DDRS Home > DDRS Policies > Current DDRS Policies > Blind & Visually Impaired Blind & Visually Impaired Services

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About BVIS

Blind and Visually Impaired Services (BVIS) is a program of the Bureau of Rehabilitation Services (BRS), a Division of Disability & Rehabilitative Services (DDRS). BVIS provides services to eligible Hoosier’s that are blind or visually impaired.

Forms

Programs

The Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program provides entrepreneurial opportunities for legally blind clients of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS). These blind entrepreneurs manage a wide variety of food-service operations, including cafeterias, coffee shops, vending locations, and highway area vending sites. Through this program, blind individuals receive training and opportunities to become productive, tax-paying citizens and independent business owners.

Eligibility for the Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program is for individuals with a significant visual disability and are benefiting from VRS in terms of achieving employment. Applications for services are accepted at the time an individual with a disability reaches or nears the minimum age of legal employment.

Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS) Eligibility:

  • Physical or mental disability resulting in a substantial impediment to employment
  • Able to benefit from VRS employment
  • Requires VRS to prepare for, enter, engage in or retain gainful employment
  • Must be 18-years or older
  • Complete all services on their Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE)
  • Provide documentation of independent living skills
  • Must have a high school graduate or GED equivalent
  • Basic math skills required

The Older Blind/Visually Impaired Program expands independent living services for people who are age 55 and older, and have a severe visual impairment. Through a grant from the Department of Education, Older Blind Program, Indiana Blind and Visually Impaired Services provide funding to six contractors:

Indianapolis Resource Center for Independent Living (Indianapolis)

  • accessABILITY Center for Independent Living, Inc.
    5302 E. Washington Street
    Indianapolis, IN 46218
    317-926-1660
    info@abilityindiana.org
    http://www.abilityindiana.org/

  • The Independent Living Center of Eastern Indiana (Richmond)
    Jim McCormick, Executive Director
    1818 W. Main Street
    Richmond, IN 47374
    765-939-9226 office
    765-935-2215 Fax/TTY
    877-939-9226 Toll Free
    jimm@ilcein.org

  • The League of Blind & Disabled (Ft. Wayne)
    David Nelson, Executive Director
    5821 South Anthony Blvd.
    Fort Wayne, IN 46816
    260-441-0551 office V/TTY
    260-441-7760 fax
    800-889-3443 (toll free)
    The.League@verizon.net

  • The Wabash Independent Living and Learning Center (Terre Haute)
    The WILL Center
    Peter Ciancone, Executive Director
    4312 S. Seventh Street
    Terre Haute, IN 47802
    812-298-9455 office
    812-299-9061 Fax
    info@thewillcenter.org

These services are coordinated statewide for Older Blind & Visually Impaired Hoosier’s. This program offers in-home training services, including but not limited to; cooking, money management, communications skills, Braille, grooming, mobility, and low vision aids.

Older Blind & Visually Impaired Services Program Eligibility:

  • Must be age 55 or older
  • Must have a severe visual disability or be legally blind

Centers for Independent Living

To Apply for Services

For information regarding resources for Blind Services in Indiana and the Older Blind/Visually Impaired Program contact:

John Trent: <John.Trent@fssa.IN.gov> or
Call Toll Free: 1-877-241-8144 or 317-232-1433

For information regarding resources for the Business Enterprise Program contact:

Locket Phillips: <Locket.Phillips@fssa.IN.gov> or
Call Toll Free: 1-877-241-8144 or 1-317-232-1433