Tag Archive


Reservations Going Fast for EHC Summer Sessions

The schedule is up and reservations are going fast for our Summer Sessions at Enchanted Hills Camp for the Blind and Visually Impaired. From babies to gray-hairs, there is a session designed for you! There is even a new session of Family Camp just for residents of Napa County! And after a few year’s hiatus, we are bringing back the Deaf-Blind session!

What’s New At EHC?

  • Enjoy the outdoor talent shows at our brand new redwood theater!
  • Explore new hiking trails parts of the campground that haven’t been visited in years!
  • We’ve upgraded our tandem bike fleet so that more campers can ride!

Sessions are listed below. For more information, visit the Enchanted Hills Camp 2013 page on our website. For questions please call us at 415-694-7310 or email us at EHC@lighthouse-sf.org.

EHC Sessions List
Chemistry Camp: May 3 – May 5
Napa Resident Family Camp: May 17 – 19 (call 415) 694-7310 for registration)
Blind Babies Family Camp: June 14 – June 16
Family Camp I: June 20 – June 23
Adults with Special Needs: June 29 – July 3
Adult/Alumni: July 5 – July 10
Family Camp II: July 11 – July 14
Kid’s Session – 3rd through 8th grade: July 15 – July 21
Family Camp III: July 24 – July 27
Teen Session – 9th through 12th grade: July 28 – Aug 3
Deaf-Blind Session: August 15 – Aug 18

Personal Services/Driver Volunteer Positions Available

Are you looking for a volunteer position that will make a profound impact in someone’s life? Do you prefer to work with people one-on-one rather than in large groups? More importantly, would you like to make a significant contribution to the life of a blind or low vision person in as little as two hours per week?

If so, you may be interested in becoming a Personal Services/Driver volunteer. Our clients may need assistance with: reading mail, books, newspapers and periodicals; writing checks, letters and correspondence; home organization; grocery shopping or errands; or attending cultural, social or sporting events.

Volunteer at the LightHouse! Visit  www.lbvi.staging.wpengine.com.com to complete a volunteer application.

Calling All Seniors and People with Disabilities!

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is having an important hearing on your needs.
Monday May 21 at 10:00 a.m.
San Francisco City Hall Board of Supervisors Chambers

Come hear a presentation on the 2010 census that explains the needs of our seniors and people with disabilities in San Francisco. Hear the City discuss why the need is increasing more rapidly than ever. Find out what the City’s plan is to address the growing number of people who want to age in the community. Come testify to the impact of the budget cuts we have endured over the last 5 years.
This is your time to let the legislators hear from you.

For more information, call James Chionsini (415) 703-0188 ext 304

A Tribute to James Macchi

On March 16, 2012, 67-year-old LightHouse friend and senior client James Macchi passed away quietly in his home leaving behind his wife of fifteen years, Marsha Macchi, as well as many close friends.

His widow Marsha regaled this writer with happy memories about their life together. Much of what she said made me smile and wish I had known James better, while the love they had for each other stood out as an overriding theme and an example to all married couples. Marsha said, “We made a commitment from day one not to divorce. We swore to work things out. [We always said] if we tended to the garden then we could keep the weeds out.”

Speaking of tending gardens, Marsha talked at length about James’ enthusiasm for gardening. Each week he participated in the LightHouse Gardening Program, nurturing the growing plants and making good use of the harvest when they were ready. According to Marsha, he relished using flowers from the garden to make beautiful flower arrangements and was equally interested in using the vegetables he helped to grow in delicious home-cooked meals.

Although not an early adopter, James was very open to the way in which accessible technology could enhance and fit into his life. He also loved to read braille; so much that he considered himself an “advocate” for the use of braille. When introducing himself to a group, he liked to declare, “My name is James Macchi. I’m a braille-a-holic and proud to be a braille-a-holic.” (As an avid braille reader myself, I say that anyone who claims to be a braille-a-holic is pretty cool in my book.)

James passing was unexpected and he will be sorely missed by all of us at the LightHouse. Here’s what a few staffers had to say about him:

Community Services Program Coordinator Molly Irish said, “He made friends very easily. He hung out with Don Lewinski and Barney Howell mostly and they talked about anything and everything. It was fun listening to them and sometimes you just had to laugh with them. James could also sing; he had a nice singing voice. He would sing with the band. He enjoyed life to its fullest.”

Beth Berenson, coordinator of our Technology Seminar series, said, “I could count on James to get excited about our tech seminars – he was always one of the first to sign up. But more than anything, I always noticed the love between him and Marsha – they were devoted to each other.”

Social Worker Jeff Carlson said, “It was my privilege to have James as one of my longest running LightHouse clients. Above all, James was a kind and gentle man who was respectful toward his fellow clients and LightHouse staff. James worked hard to do the right thing.”

And from LightHouse CEO Bryan Bashin, “James was an articulate and longtime member of many of our senior programs, and his passing leaves a big gap. James attended every Dialogue with the Director meeting since I have been at the LightHouse, and was a loving advocate and kind friend to me personally. In our last meeting James told me about his working at LightHouse Industries at least back into the 1970s and I marveled that the LightHouse and James had touched each other’s lives for forty years and more. James has many friends and it is hard to imagine senior activities here without him.”

Center of the Redwoods has a New Volunteer Driver Program

The much-anticipated program sponsored by the Volunteer Center of the Redwoods has become a reality. Effective March2, 2011, the Volunteer Driver Program began its service to Eureka area residents. This is in response to numerous requests from local folks needing rides to medical appointments.

The eligibility requirements:
-Must be at least 50 years of age and/or physically disabled -Transportation to and from medical appointments only
-Must call at least 48 hours in advance of the trip

Operating hours are 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday

The approximate geographic area of the program now runs south to Scotia, north to Bayside/Indianola, and coastal communities in between, and east including Freshwater, Cutten and Carlotta. At this time, expansion to other areas is reliant on future funding.

The driver program is actively seeking more volunteers to join its current group of drivers. Drivers are offered limited mileage reimbursement and drive their own vehicles. The Volunteer Center screens its drivers and ensures that there is transportation from door to door.

For more information, please contact the Volunteer Center of the Redwoods & RSVP:

Call 707-442-3711 in Humboldt County or email vcor@a1aa.org

Visit the Volunteer Center in the Area 1 Agency on Aging building at 434 Seventh Street in Eureka.

ADRC Presentation on MediCal Changes at the LightHouse March 30

The Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) will be giving a presentation at the LightHouse on upcoming changes to MediCal.

San Francisco Health Plan (SFHP) and Anthem Blue Cross will be providing community presentations about the upcoming changes to Medi-Cal. Starting June 2011, most seniors and people with disabilities that have Medi-Cal only (not Medicare) will need to enroll in a Medi-Cal Health Plan. SFHP and Anthem Blue Cross are collaborating to present a state approved presentation to Medi-Cal beneficiaries who may be impacted by this change. The presentation with Q & A should take no longer than 45 minutes to an hour.

The presentation is scheduled to start at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 30. It is open to the public.

Medicare Handbook in Braille

The 2011 edition of the “Medicare and You” Handbook, which all Medicare recipients receive in the mail is now available in Braille. It comes in three soft cover volumes, 257 pages in Braille. This is the official US government Medicare handbook, covering what’s new, what Medicare costs, what it covers, health and prescription drug plans, and your Medicare rights. To order this publication in Braille call 1(800) 633-4227, ask to speak to an agent, and ask for Braille.

Resources for Veterans

In honor of  Veteran’s Day, the LightHouse wants to remind returning veterans who are new to blindness or aging veterans who may be experiencing decreased vision that the San Francisco Veteran’s Affairs Medical Center offers comprehensive services for regaining independence.

The Visual Impairment Services Team Program (VIST) at the VA assists veterans with mobility and adaptive technology training, as well ass offering classes in daily living skills and counseling sessions.

Referrals can be submitted by the Veteran, family, health care professional, or other concerned individuals. For more information contact:

Phone: (415) 221-4810 x2813
Email: lila.jaffray@va.gov

Deaf and Disabled Telecommunications Program Seeks Senior Citizen Community Representative

The Equipment Program Advisory Committee (EPAC), of the Deaf and Disabled Telecommunications Program (DDTP) is now accepting applications for one Senior Citizen Community Representative.  Committee members play an important role in providing valuable input from a diverse group of California citizens by working with the DDTP and the State of California.

For more information please visit http://ddtp.cpuc.ca.gov/default.aspx?id=1075

Attached is a flyer announcing the Committee seat vacancy and the application.  Alternate formats of the flyer or application can be requested by contacting the Committee Coordinator at Voice (510) 302-1110, TTY: (510) 302-1150, VP (510) 545-4791 or send an e-mail to karen@ddtp.org

Application deadline: Friday, September 24, 2010.