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Choices and Changes

Course Description


Choices and Changes is a four-week education/orientation program that is available to adults with visual impairments and their family members.  The sessions, which are led by social services staff and rehabilitation teaching staff, address different aspects of rehabilitation and focus on the following goals: 

Each 2 ½ hour session features an exposure to one aspect of rehabilitation with opportunity for discussion, sharing of collective experience, and hands-on work with the equipment and techniques provided.  Topics include understanding of vision disorders and legal blindness, daily living skills techniques and adaptive equipment, safe travel and use of canes, community education and recreation programs, understanding and managing emotional responses to vision loss, and use of technology to enhance communication. 


Understanding Your New Life - Individuals have an opportunity to discuss their personal situation ; review major eye disorders,  and the meanings of visual field and legal blindness; discuss ways to maintain independence and equality in relationships and etiquette in communicating with people who have vision impairment.


Staying In Control – Hands-on exposure to adaptive equipment created to make daily life easier; professional instruction in use of equipment to  assist in daily activities like managing money and finances, cooking and personal  hygiene; information about agencies and resources that can help with daily tasks as well as recreation and hobbies; discussion and demonstrations of some assistive technology.


Out and About – Experiential training with a mobility instructor in use of sighted guide, information about canes, negotiating intersections, travel training; understanding fixed route and paratransit services in compliance with the ADA; information about travel opportunities.


Why Do I Feel Like I Do? – Discussion of the stages of adjusting to vision loss; what to do about depression and anxiety; choosing a counselor; self-advocacy and assertiveness; agencies and groups available for advocacy.


For more information about upcoming Choices and Changes Classes :


Palo Alto Classes (English) - contact Sharon Hudson at 650-858-0202 ext.111 or email


Palo Alto Class (Spanish) - contact John Faustino at 650-858-0202 ext.128 or


Santa Cruz Classes (English) please contact Ana Bedingfeld at 831-458-9766 or