The Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic is clearly shattering lives in its global path. Whether you have been affected directly or indirectly in its trail, I’m sure you will agree that your daily routine has changed.
Social distancing, self-isolating, or even sheltering in place for many of us may have been something only read about in a Sci-Fi novel. Now, due to this outbreak, we are living it everywhere every day.
Individuals are facing extreme financial strains. Businesses have shut down, employees are furloughed and, in many cases, have been laid off. Along with these financial strains, grocery shelves are bare, hospitals are full, schools are vacant and many of us have never felt so alone. Most importantly, lives of all ages from around the world are being lost. When our planet is faced with dire news every hour, panic strikes. Kindness and equity can be rare, thus generating a sense of hopelessness.
At SAAVI services for the Blind we are remaining strong and standing together ensuring that our blind community is safe, healthy and well. We have organized outreach to contact individuals within the blind community in an effort to administer to their needs. Whether it’s a food box from a local food pantry, to picking up a prescription, to assisting in navigating a delivery app, or even just a casual conversation, SAAVI is here to lean on. We all need someone to be there for us once in a while, and that’s exactly where we are; right here right now.
If you or someone you know is in need of valuable attentiveness, or if you would like to be an active participant in this endeavor, do not hesitate to reach out to us. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 520 829-7376. This is a statewide effort. Please help us make a difference.
“Without a sense of caring, there can be no sense of community.” Anthony J. D’Angelo
Dear friends, supporters and colleagues:
Saavi Services for the Blind takes very seriously the health and safety of students, staff and visitors. In order to play our part in preventing the spread of COVID-19, we are announcing that all in-person center training is temporarily on hold. We will be moving to virtual training and are swiftly working to implement this. Classes, tutoring, and more will be offered via computer or over the phone. This comes as Arizona Governor Doug Ducey is ordering all Arizona public schools to close and many other public places are following. We are closely monitoring COVID-19 in Arizona and continue to follow all advice and protocol. We are working very hard on informing everyone of the best practices and communicating our contingency plans clearly with our staff, students and partners. We will continue to stay alert to the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 in Arizona and will most certainly continue to take this matter very seriously.
We strongly encourage everyone to take all necessary steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19, by following CDC guidelines. This includes washing hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. For more information on how to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, click here for the CDC’s website.
We will continue to keep you updated as this situation moves along.
Saavi Services for the Blind
It was close to thanksgiving and a single mom (whose name is not mentioned for privacy reasons) with two kids in Yuma just lost her job. She didn’t have a place to live and the last thing she wanted to do was think about having a Thanksgiving Dinner. It was not a holiday season they were looking forward to.
Around that same time, students were sitting in their philosophy class at SAAVI Services for the Blind’s Yuma center, answering the question “So, how can we give back this holiday season?”
That’s when these two stories meet.
Scott, who teaches cane travel in Yuma, was leading a topic one day about why it’s important for blind people to give back. He was challenging students to find something that the center can contribute to this holiday season. Can food drive, feeding the homeless, volunteering, making a lunch for the community, were all the thoughts that popped into students’ heads. After a while, a student suggested that they provide a meal for a family. Everyone agreed.
“I wanted the students to feel like they owned this idea,” Scott said. “It’s important that we know as blind people that we have a role to play in giving back to the community.”
The first thing they needed to do was spread the word. The Yuma site manager, Julio, had a connection with a local radio station. He was able to get air time promoting the cause, asking listeners to nominate deserving families. You can watch the video below or check out our Facebook post.
After this, word started to spread about this cause and SAAVI soon had about 10 families nominated. They worked with Albertsons to get a big Turkey donated and students helped gather and prepare the meal that would be delivered.
A week or so later, after families were nominated, students had a drawing and pick the mom’s name out. Then it was time to make the call to let her know.
“She thought we were pranking her,” Jimmy, a Yuma student said. “She didn’t believe us because it felt like it came from nowhere.”
So, in order to convince her, they sent her the video of them drawing her name. You can watch the Facebook live video below:
“She was so honored,” Jimmy said.
Just before thanks giving, it was time to deliver the meal. A group of students gather the meal, navigated to the house and knocked on the door.
When students showed up to the house, they were met with tears of joy and hugs. The family was overjoyed, because they now knew they had a meal for the holidays.
“It brought us great joy to be able to provide the family with a delicious meal for Thanksgiving, Jimmy Said. “It’s nice to know that being blind doesn’t mean that we can’t donate our time and energy during the holidays like everyone else.”
I dare you to go to a car dealership and ask to take a test drive. I dare you to go to a hardwood store and ask about different tools.
For the month of November 2019, SAAVI Services for the blind will participate in our own “Dare Me to Transform” which utilizes “Rejection Therapy” principles, made popular by Jia Jang.
Students, staff and board members will be taking part in “dares” that are specifically meant to place them outside of their comfort zone; taking part in things that they otherwise may not. They will compete for prizes and bragging rights; all while challenging themselves and growing.
Jia Jang’s rejection therapy is based off his ideas associated with the positive benefits of not being afraid of rejection, as outlined in his two books “100 days of rejection:” and “Rejection proof.”
By purposely engaging in social challenges and interacting with real people, Jang states, a person can open up themselves to not being afraid of rejection. This helps quick thinking, confidence and can help lay the foundation down for long-lasting personal change.
We dare you to clickand donate to SAAVI Services for the Blind. We dare you to keep reading this story.
Dares will take place in all three centers. Participants will choose a dare on a braille index card each week. Dares can be completed more than that however. Students, staff and board members will receive points for the number of dares completed. Participants must provide proof of their dare. At the end of the month, prizes will be given out for the most points.
“Participating in challenges such as this encourage us all to dig a little within and push ourselves a little farther,”” Said Jordan Moon, SAAVI Services for the Blind’s Public Relations coordinator. “Some dares will challenge our social fears and other will challenge our blindness skills, but all will make us better.”
For more information about rejection Therapy, please see Jang’s YouTube video below.
Please stay tune for a recap of the dares completed and some awesome results!