[Tall-Corn] FW: Update on IDB Operations

Scott Van Gorp svangorp at nfbi.org
Wed Mar 18 03:17:49 UTC 2020

Good Evening Fellow Federationists:

Please see the below critical update from Director Wharton on the COVID-19 response from the Iowa Department for the Blind that came out this evening to the consumer group presidents. Please reach out if you have any questions. Thank you!


Scott Van Gorp, President
National Federation of the Blind of Iowa
Phone: 515-720-5282
 <mailto:svangorp at nfbi.org> Email

 <http://www.nfbi.org/> Website 
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Live the life you want.

The National Federation of the Blind of Iowa is a community of members and friends who believe in the hopes and dreams of the nation’s blind. Every day we work together to help blind people live the lives they want.




Sent: Tuesday, March 17, 2020 6:57 PM
Subject: Update on IDB Operations


Hello Affiliate  Presidents, I posted the below on our website and wanted you to be aware and feel free to share. It is a rapidly changing situation and we at IDB have been working really hard to keep services going to the greatest extent possible while being mindful of the health of our clients patrons, and staff. We are hoping to have more specific info to share about our distance learning and meeting options in the next couple of days. If you have any questions, please let me know. Take care. 


In light of the current public health crisis, IDB  is asking the public not to visit our building until further notice. The majority of  staff is transitioning into working remotely. We are still taking referrals via the phone or through our website. Field staff are refraining from visiting clients but will make every effort to provide as many services as possible via phone and over the internet.  Current clients can still call, text, or email  their VR counselor or IL teacher.  Library patrons can call or email the library. The support and braille learning groups run by Terri Wilcox are working on meeting telephonically during this time. The library is working to continue to send out cartridges,  braille, and large print books    as long as we can feasibly do so. Library staff  have increased the number of audio books being placed on a multi-book  cartridge from 10 to 20 books. Library staff are working on providing online training to teachers, paras, families, and braille learners on braille, creating accessible documents, and other very useful topics. The library is looking to set up telephonic narrator reading/discussion groups for patrons. The entire agency is committed to continue as many services as possible  via the phone and internet and is looking to find additional and innovative ways to do so. We will share additional updates and information as it is available. Thank you for your patience and flexibility.



Emily Wharton, MFA CPM
Director, Iowa Department for the Blind
"A proud partner in the America’s Job Center Network"


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