Join a Zoom meeting on Thursday, June 11, at 7 pm central time to learn more about the National Federation of the Blind’s Newsline service.
Newsline allows you to access participating newspapers and magazines by audio if you have a print disability. You can listen by landline, by mobile phone, and even through Alexa.
If you are a Talking Book Program patron, we can sign you up for this service. Newsline is free. To request registration, email TBP at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at 1-800-252-9605.
Here is the link to access the Zoom meeting on Thursday night: https://zoom.us/j/94278650088
Here is the link for the Newsline service: https://www.nfb.org/programs-services/nfb-newsline
REACH of Plano will be having two Zoom meetings, one this week and one next week.
The first meeting will be a discussion of the book Being Heumann, an autobiography by disability rights activist Judy Heumann. The discussion will take place on Friday, April 24th, from 11 am – noon.
The second meeting will be about COVID-19 resources for Texas residents and individuals who reside in Collin County. Representatives from REACH of Plano, the Talking Book Program, and the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities will each present information on a variety of topics of interest to people with disabilities and health conditions during the current pandemic. This meeting will take place on Thursday, April 30th, at 1 pm.
Please send an e-mail to Julie Espinoza at email@example.com if you are interested in one or both of these meetings.
The United States Census occurs every ten years, and helps provide funding for local communities and congressional representation. Make sure you are counted! You should receive census information by mail between March 12 – March 20. You may respond by mail, by phone, or online. The census allows you to respond in a variety of languages, and the online version is accessible. For more information, visit www.2020census.gov, call 844-330-2020 for English, 844-468-2020 for Spanish, or contact the Talking Book Program for more information. Other phone numbers are available for other languages. The TDD phone number for deaf/hard of hearing persons is 800-467-2020.
Older adults and people with disabilities and underlying medical
conditions can experience more stress and anxiety during the COVID-19
outbreak than other people. Find ways to reduce your stress and anxiety:
• Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media.
• Make time to unwind and do activities you enjoy.
• Connect with family and friends by phone, text, or email.
• If you or a loved one is feeling overwhelmed, get support 24/7 by calling 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746.
Here are a few more helpful phone numbers:
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233 and TTY 1-800-787-3224
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
For more information, visit this link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html?fbclid=IwAR3SWsrU16WUj2q2svJ3Yhnz33poz3lsQh2zCu4ys96dq4Um7jkDA_GYY_I
Blue Moon Senior Counseling provides counseling services on a variety of topics for elderly individuals in several states including Texas. During the COVID -19 pandemic, services are provided in a tele-health setting, using a computer or portable device. No doctor order is required, and the counseling services are covered by Medicare, private pay, and some insurance companies.
For more information, call 855-241-7160, or visit https://bluemoonseniorcounseling.com/specialties/telehealth
During the current pandemic, when many people who are elderly or have disabilities are needing to isolate at home, a personal emergency response system would bring help in the event of a fall or medical event such as a heart attack or stroke. Here is a list of companies that sell these devices. Please note that your insurance may not cover the cost of these devices, and make sure to read all terms and conditions carefully.
Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS)
Lifeline Systems Inc:
Safety Medical Alert Systems
Good Apple now has a Stay at Home, Stay Healthy program. While supplies and funding last, a free bag of shelf stable items and produce will be delivered to Austin residents who are elderly and/or disabled. This is a one time offer and an application is required. For more information, call 737-228-3558, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit https://goodapplefoods.com/covid-19
The Hadley Institute for the Blind offers free classes and discussions by phone, by correspondence, and online for persons who are blind or visually impaired. Follow this link to listen to the audio or read the transcript of an interview with Dan Roberts, author of The First Year-Age-Related Macular Degeneration: An Essential Guide for the Newly Diagnosed and founder of MDSupport website and support group: https://hadley.edu/HadleyPresents/episode.asp?episode=From_Diagnosis_to_Support&utm_source=Hadley+Presents&utm_campaign=075819e2f3-hadleypresents-ep14-hp_3-6-2020&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_6312574b23-075819e2f3-52380393&mc_cid=075819e2f3&mc_eid=3549f96d2c
Hadley has also released a podcast that discusses resources for people with visual impairments during the current pandemic.
You can listen to the podcast here: https://hadley.edu/hadleypresents/episode.asp?episode=COVID_19_and_vision_loss&utm_source=Hadley+Presents&utm_campaign=e537d5546e-hadleypresents-ep16-hp_3-27-2020&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_6312574b23-e537d5546e-52380393&mc_cid=e537d5546e&mc_eid=3549f96d2c
Here are a few resources and ideas for seniors and people with disabilities to find assistance during the pandemic:
- If you have a smartphone, download the Nextdoor app. Nextdoor connects you to neighbors and people in your community. Many people are using Nextdoor to find individuals who will assist seniors and people with disabilities by picking up groceries, prescriptions, and other essentials.
- Call your local pharmacy and ask if they will deliver your prescriptions.
- HEB is partnering with the Favor app to provide free delivery of groceries to people age 60+. Seniors can order through the Favor app, website, or call the Senior Support phone line at 1-833-397-0080 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. seven days a week. For more information on where this is available and what you can order, follow this link: https://blog.favordelivery.com/h-e-b-and-favor-team-up-to-support-seniors-61f4ab4ad3ac
- Some grocery stores are offering a “senior” hour that allows senior citizens to shop before the store opens to everyone. Call your local store and ask if this service is available.
- If you are a para-transit client, call and ask if the service is partnering with HEB or local grocery stores to provide groceries to transit riders. HEB is currently partnering with Metro Access in Austin to provide free weekly food kits to their clients. These kits will include shelf stable items such as rice, peanut butter, and canned goods. Metro Access clients can call 512-369-6050 to order a food kit, on a first come, first served basis.
If you would like to learn about government resources regarding travel with a disability or health condition, tune in to this webinar on Wednesday, February 26, 2020, at 1 pm central time. The webinar will feature mostly government web sites related to legal issues, types of travel (by air, bus, or train), national versus international travel, health resources, and places to visit.
Click this link for more information, including how to register for the webinar: https://www.fdlp.gov/news-and-events/4318-webinar-traveling-with-a-disability-health-condition