The Sight Center has opened a new retail space, The Shop, that features items that “support independence for individuals who are blind, visually impaired or hearing impaired.” The Shop is configured like an apartment, with a living room, office, laundry, kitchen, and bedroom, and contains items that are frequently used by those with visual or hearing impairments. Each room has some sort of talking, flashing, or vibrating alarm. Dani Moran, Interim Program Director, jokes, “If we laugh too hard, we set off one of the alarms! There’s a lot of laughter here.”
According to Moran, the Sight Center decided to open a retail space to “help our clients achieve the goal of being independent and to make it more easily accessible for them to get ideas, check things out, and buy needed items.” Moran further explains, “We have chosen items that are durable and have a proven track record.” The Shop expects to have a working website within the next few months that will provide online shopping opportunities as well, but she says the boon of visiting the store is the ability to touch and test the items before buying them. The Shop also has a return policy, so if customers buy an item and decide it’s not for them, they can easily return or exchange the product.
Some of the products available for the blind/visually impaired include several talking products–scales, clocks, thermometers, blood pressure cuffs–large print phones, high-contrast phones, writing guides, high-contrast computers (for those with low vision), and computers that can read aloud everything on the page for the blind. There is also a wide selection of magnifiers, in all different strengths, in the high, medium, and low price range. For the deaf, The Shop sells, among other items, alarms and phones that flash or vibrate, doorbells and smoke detectors that flash, and a phone with captioning.
8:30am-4:30pm, Monday-Friday. Low Vision Clinics available
through direct referral and are appointment only.
The Shop at The Sight Center of Northwest Ohio,
1002 Garden Lake Pkwy, Toledo. 419.720.3937. SightCenterToledo.org.