Affiliate News

GDUI Seeks Nominees for Its Annual Awards
 
Guide Dog Users, Inc. is seeking candidates for our Ethel Bender and Moffett-Gleitz awards.  In addition, we wish to honor the writers and communicators who make our quarterly magazine, PawTracks, and other productions such as the GDUI Juno Report, such informative and entertaining publications.
 
We encourage you to think about all the PawTracks and GDUI Juno contributors whose stories, articles, and poems have informed and entertained you in the last year. If someone moved you or made you smile, or taught you something new about yourself or your dog or your experience as a person who is blind, we hope you will nominate that person for the GDUI PawTracks Excellence in Media Award.
 
The Ethel Bender Award honors a sighted person who has made a significant contribution to the guide dog community.  Past winners include Ted Zubrycki, Lukas Franck and Michael Lilly.
 
The Moffett-Gleitz Award honors a person who is blind and who has significantly improved the lives of guide dog users.
 
Awards will be presented at the GDUI annual luncheon on Wednesday, July 5, in Reno.  Please submit a letter of nomination that includes the name(s) of the person(s) being nominated, their contact information, and the name of the award for which they are being nominated and why you think they should receive it. It does not need to be long, but sufficiently worded so as to give us a clear understanding as to why you choose to nominate that person(s).  Please also include your contact information in case we need more information. Send your nominations to Charlie Crawford, CCrawford@RCN.com, and put the words “GDUI Award Nomination(s)” in your subject line.
 
 No access to e-mail?  Call GDUI’s office manager, Sarah Calhoun, at 1-866-799-8436.  All nominations must be in by June 1, 2017.
 
Spotlight on ACBS
 
For much of my life, my idea of what it meant to be blind was always redefining itself. I had difficulty accepting my blindness and the blindness community as a whole for many years. For this reason, I never expected to find a home in ACB Students in the way that I did last summer. I received a 2016 scholarship, and I can honestly say that attending convention just a few months after graduating from high school was a truly incredible experience.  My relationship with my blindness, and blindness-related groups by extension, was never a source of personal encouragement for me. 
 
I was born with low vision in both eyes, which degenerated over time. I lost the vision in my right eye when I was 6 and the vision in my left eye when I was 14. For many years, I felt like there was nowhere that I truly fit in. While I didn’t have enough vision to do all the things that fully sighted people could do, I felt no connections to the individuals that I met who were totally blind either. When I lost my vision completely, I thought that it would be easier to find a place to belong. Now, I told myself, I knew what category I fit into.
 
As I began to try to involve myself in the blindness community, I soon came to realize that I still wasn’t experiencing the level of connectedness that I was hoping for. I expected the ACB convention to simply be another repetition of my prior experiences with blindness groups. Instead, I was pleasantly surprised to feel otherwise. I felt free to express myself and how I viewed my blindness because I saw others doing the same. At convention, I not only found acceptance, but a desire to impact the lives of other blind students through my involvement with the board.  I was elected ACBS secretary at convention and it has been an exceptionally rewarding experience that I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of.
 
— Abby Edwards, secretary
 
ACB of Ohio Holding Raffle for $1,500
 
Can you use $1,500? If so, ACB-Ohio can help! Just purchase one or more virtual raffle tickets at only $10 each. Buy three and get a fourth one free!
 
To buy tickets, go to www.acbohio.org/raffle. Although the website says you need to use PayPal, you do not. After providing your information on step 1, move to step 2 and choose the “Use A Credit Card” button. If you prefer, call 1-800-835-2226 and Katie will help you.
 
The drawing will take place on May 1, in time to help with your expenses at the national convention in Reno!