Charleston, SC – On August 1, 2023, the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired South Carolina (ABVI), merged with The Vision Institute (TVI), to revolutionize services for individuals living with a visual impairment in South Carolina. This merger entails a blending of programs, people, ideas, and allows ABVI to serve individuals of all ages. The merger will also expand resources so that individuals who are blind or visually impaired throughout our state will have access to life-changing vision rehabilitation services regardless of location.
Vision rehabilitation services teach individuals the adaptive skills necessary to live safely and independently following vision loss. This training is critical as it helps people adjust to life with their disability. For children, this training often involves learning foundational skills that make accessing the curriculum in school a possibility. Fortunately, ABVI has acquired TVI’s powerhouse team of certified instructors with the goal that no child living with a visual impairment in our state will lack the resources they need to thrive.
“This merger could not have come at a better time,” says Joe Waring, Chair of ABVI’s Board of Directors. “The need for vision rehabilitation services is growing exponentially nationwide, and without efforts to expand access to these essential services, we could be facing a looming healthcare crisis.”
A 2022 study revealed more than 75,000 people over 65 in South Carolina reported vision impairments, and this number will only grow with the aging population. ABVI is eager to meet this growing need for independent living skills training by expanding access to its services statewide. ABVI will now operate out of facilities in the Lowcountry and Midlands, and they have a goal to have a location in the upstate in the next year. They also provide community-based, school-based, in-home and virtual services, statewide.
“With rates of vision loss expected to double this decade, especially in our aging community, our citizens need help. I applaud the merger of ABVI and TVI, which is a union of two wonderful charitable organizations coming together to provide more critical services to South Carolinians who are blind and visually impaired,” said Pamela Evette, Lieutenant Governor of South Carolina.
About the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired South Carolina
The Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired South Carolina’s (ABVI) mission is to enrich the quality of life of the blind and visually impaired. ABVI’s adult program helps adults who are blind, visually impaired or have a progressive condition living in South Carolina learn new approaches to daily life and provides job-readiness training for those seeking to join the workforce. ABVI now has a children’s program including TVI’s School-Age Services through which we provide independent living skills training, braille, orientation and mobility, assistive technology training and more to school-age children in schools throughout the state.
To learn more about ABVI, please visit www.abvisc.org.
SCBIZtv is part of the SC Biz News family, serving 100,000 high-level business execs throughout South Carolina. Click for more from SCBIZtv.