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Winning Solutions for Failing Sight
Serving Our Community Since 1979

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Welcome to LVC

(Formerly known as The Low Vision Information Center)
Read this to me

The Low Vision Center is a nonprofit organization that helps people with low vision maintain their independence. Located in Bethesda, Maryland, we offer information services as well as a demonstration area full of a variety of low vision aids and ideas.

The Low Vision Center offers its resources without charge, relying entirely upon personal contributions to fund its varied services.

I invite you to browse our web site for more information about our services, as well as helpful hints for improving your vision. Some examples include:

I also invite you to make an appointment to visit our demonstration area so you can examine our low vision aids, including magnifiers, CCTV's, Zoom Text, and non-optical adaptive aids (such as talking clocks and writing guides). We also sell a select group of low vision aids and Bausch & Lomb, Coil, Eschenbach, and Schweitzer magnifiers. Please don't hesitate to call us for additional information or to make an appointment for a visit.  Appointments are usually scheduled between 11:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Terry Eason
Executive Director

News and Notes

Job training at CLB

Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind is seeking participants for a 2 week Digital Data Scan employment training course, from September 15, 2014 to October 23, 2014.  The training is designed for adults who are blind or visually impaired AND/OR a veteran living in Alexandria, VA or Montgomery County.
  • DDS Training Details
    • 2 weeks of training
    • Monday through Thursday from 9:00am - 2:00 pm
    • $25 per day stipend
  • Eligibility includes the following:
    • 18 years of age or older
    • Currently visually impaired or blind
    • A veteran of a U.S. military branch
    • Currently reside in Alexandria, VA or Montgomery County, MD
  • Training Location
    • Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind
      8720 Georgia Avenue, Suite 1011
      Silver Spring, MD 20910

Contact ChaTora Johnson at or call 240-737-5120 to register or get more information!

We have a site map

We've added a site map to our web site.  We hope this will make navigating our site easier for people using smaller screens, such as on a smart phone or tablet.  The site map presents the contents of as a single column of simple text.  Selecting the second link on any page of this site will take you to the site map.

Window-Eyes free with Microsoft Office

Window-Eyes screen reader software is now available free to licensed users of Microsoft Office (version 2010 or later).  Learn more in the GW Micro press release at, or download Window Eyes at

JHU needs blind research participants

The Neuroplasticity and Development Lab in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Johns Hopkins University is seeking participants for psychology research studies.  The goal of this research is to better understand how visual and non-visual experiences contribute to changes in the brain .

Participating in this research study involves having an MRI, listening to stories and sounds, and answering questions.  Each study lasts approximately 3 hours.  Participants are compensated $30 per hour for their time and are reimbursed for transportation expenses to the testing site at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore.

We are seeking individuals who are totally blind or with light perception.  To qualify for the study participants must be healthy blind adults between 18 and 75 years of age with no cognitive or neurological disabilities.  To complete a screening interview please call (410) 870-9895 or email  The interview takes between 15 and 30 minutes and those who take part in the interview are compensated with a $15 Amazon gift card.

To learn more, please contact the lab either by calling (410) 870-9895 or emailing

Free U.S. currency reader device

The U. S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) plans to add tactile features to our paper money in the next round of redesign.  Meanwhile, if you have an Apple iPhone or other IOS device, or an Android smart phone or device, you can get a free app to identify the denomination of a U. S. bill by using the device's camera.  For Apple devices the app is iNote, and for Android devices the app is IDEAL.  More information is on the BEP web site at

For those without smart phones or who want another option, in January 2015 the BEP will begin providing iBill talking banknote identifier devices free of charge to eligible blind and visually impaired individuals.  As a test of the ordering procedure, participants in the NLS Talking Book program can pre-order a device starting September 2.  Distribution of the currency readers and ordering for eligible non-NLS participants will begin in January.  For details, see the BEP press release at

Just for fun

The Super Egg Hunt computer game is fully accessible to the visually impaired, since you play it entirely by ear.  Find as many eggs as you can within the time limit, but watch out for the chicken! She's dangerous!

To find more accessible games, try the web sites and, or listen to the "Accessible Games" presentation at the LBPH Technology User Group archive.  Warning: some of the games demonstrated on this recording could be considered "PG" rated.  You may want to wear headphones if listening to it in the vicinity of children.

Watch out for phone scams!

Some of us here at LVC have recently been targeted by a "tech support phone scam."  If you don't know what this is, read this article from Microsoft and find out:

Being able to recognize these crooks when they call can save you time, money, and aggravation.

Tip for Microsoft Windows users

In Microsoft Windows, holding down the left "Alt" key and the left "Shift" key while you push the Print Screen (PrtScr) key will switch between normal and high contrast display modes.  Of course, if your normal mode is already high contrast, switching won't make much difference.

Technology users' group via telephone

David Goldfield, an assistive technology specialist, runs a computer and assistive technology users' group by phone, which meets on a conferencing system on the last Friday of each month from 8:00-10:00 PM (US Eastern time).  He tries, when possible, to have guest presenters dealing with various aspects of assistive technology, such as discussing Linux, the iPhone, the Mac and, most recently, representatives from Bookshare.  While it was initially set up for users in or around Philadelphia, others are welcome to participate.  For more information, see the FAQ page at or contact Mr. Goldfield by e-mail at

Bowling by the visually impaired

If you think poor eyesight must keep you from enjoying the sport of bowling, you might be surprised.  For more information, read the article at

Before you browse this web site, we suggest you review our web site policies.

We thank the following sponsors and all our other supporters for their generosity.

Venus Factor Tony Dwyer in memory of Bob and Doris Downes

Please note that by accepting a donation LVC is not necessarily endorsing the donor.
Learn how you can support LVC by sponsoring this web page.

Last Update: Sept. 4, 2014

4905 Del Ray Avenue, Suite 504
Bethesda, MD 20814

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