The Federation Center of the Blind is the state headquarters of the National Federation of the Blind of South Carolina and, offers blind South Carolinians a wide variety of programs and services designed to encourage independence and productivity, and to promote positive and respectful attitudes about blind people and blindness. Given adequate education and training in blindness related skills, most blind people can compete on terms of equality with their sighted peers in school, work, and in the community.
The Federation Center (formerly the Aurora Center) is owned and operated by the blind of South Carolina. Through its programs and services, the Federation Center has promoted security, equality and opportunity for all blind South Carolinians since 1961. A nine member Board of Trustees, all of whom are blind, govern the operation of the Federation Center with the valuable assistance of a distinguished Advisory Board of prominent civic and business leaders. The Federation Center of the Blind believes in blind people and is committed to the total inclusion of the blind into the social, spiritual and economic spheres of their communities.
Programs & Services
Classes, Workshops & Seminars
The Federation Center offers a variety of classes, workshops and seminars designed to enhance the lives of blind South Carolinians ranging from educational issues and career development, to braille and computer instruction.
Counseling & Consultation
Understanding blindness can be difficult. The Federation Center offers newly-blinded persons and their families the opportunity to talk with others who are blind. Helpful guidance and encouragement result from the exchange of mutual problems and experiences.
Information & Referral
The Federation Center maintains a library of print, cassette, braille, and electronic materials covering a variety of topics for distribution or loan to blind people. The staff also assists blind individuals and their families in finding other local, state, and national services that fall outside the scope of the Center’s function.
The Palmetto Blind
A source of up-to-date information for blind South Carolinians, this semi-annual publication of the National Federation of the Blind of South Carolina is coordinated and distributed in large print, cassette tape, braille, e-mail, and on NFB Newsline.
A Speaker’s Bureau, brochures, NFB Kernel Books, Braille alphabet cards, and other materials are available to businesses, civic groups, schools, churches and others. Upon request, the Federation Center is available to assist groups in the planning and development of service projects for the blind.
The Americans with Disabilities Act Compliance Questions
The Federation Center stands ready to assist with compliance to the ADA. Equal access to employment, transportation, housing and other services is crucial to the blind. We can work with individuals and groups with concerns in meeting ADA requirements.
Braille Instruction and Transcription
The Federation Center can provide, upon request, lessons in braille and braille transcription. The Center produces over 20,000 pages of braille each year for a variety of purposes for the blind, such as newsletters, magazines, convention agendas, etc. There may be a nominal fee to transcribe materials into braille for schools, restaurants, hotels, businesses, churches, etc. Small one-time items like greeting cards are usually produced at no charge.
Assistive Technology and Computer Training
The Federation Center has a computer lab with assistive technology such as screen reading and magnification software, which can place the world at the fingertips of blind individuals! Blind instructors teach blind students assistive technology software for the computer. Throughout the year, the Computer Science and Technology Division of the NFB of SC offers classes for a small fee on Apple devices and utilization of those products with the Voice Over screen reader that is built into most of the recent versions of those devices.
NEW FEDERATION CENTER RENTAL FEES
A motion was passed by the Federation Center Board of Trustees at the first quarterly meeting on March 23 that as of July 1, 2018, rental of the Center by members would be $150 (or a $100 rental fee plus a $50 refundable cleaning deposit). Non-member volunteers or those presenting recommendation letters from members would be charged $350 (or a $300 rental fee plus a $50 refundable cleaning deposit). All other rentals will be $500 (or a $400 per use rental fee plus a $100 refundable cleaning deposit).
If you or someone you know is blind, or for more information, contact David Houck, Executive Director using one of the following methods.
Federation Center of the Blind of South Carolina
119 S. Kilbourne Rd.
Columbia, SC 29205.
Office: (803) 254-3777