edited by Sharon Strzalkowski
The announcement of products and services in this column does not represent an endorsement by the American Council of the Blind, its officers, or staff. Listings are free of charge for the benefit of our readers. “The ACB Braille Forum” cannot be held responsible for the reliability of the products and services mentioned. To submit items for this column, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone the national office at 1-800-424-8666, and leave a message in Sharon Lovering’s mailbox. Information must be received at least two months ahead of publication date.
College Success Scholarship Available
Study.com is offering a new scholarship to college students. The College Success Scholarship gives one lucky student $1,000 to help with their tuition.
In order to participate in the scholarship contest, applicants must meet the following criteria:
· Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent U.S. resident, and
· Must be enrolled (or accepted) in an accredited college or university.
· Graduating high school seniors who meet the above mentioned criteria may apply.
The application deadline is April 1, 2017. To submit an application, go to http://study.com/blog/college-success-scholarship-by-study-com.html.
Tax Assistance Available
Tax season is upon us! With all those forms to fill out, where do you turn for help? The IRS has made hundreds of federal tax forms and publications accessible. Visit https://www.irs.gov/uac/irs-gov-accessibility. You can choose from large print, text, accessible PDFs, e-Braille, or HTML formats that are compatible when used with screen readers and refreshable braille displays. The IRS also provides videos in American Sign Language at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=el-xueE-ZDY&list=PL634968897EAEA4FD&index=3 and has a dedicated ASL YouTube Channel, https://www.youtube.com/user/IRSvideosASL.
For those who are unable to complete their tax returns because of a physical disability, or are age 60 or older, you may get assistance through the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) or Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs. You can find a nearby VITA or TCE location by using the locator tools at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/free-tax-return-preparation-for-you-by-volunteers or by calling 1-800-906-9887.
Publication 907, “Tax Highlights for Persons with Disabilities,” explains the tax implications of certain disability benefits and other issues, and is available at https://www.irs.gov/publications/p907/index.html.
Camp Siloam 2017 Bible Conference
Camp Siloam 2017 Bible Conference and camping session for blind adults will be held May 20-27 at the Golden Cross Ranch in New Caney, Tex. This year’s theme is “Conformation or Transformation.” There is a morning and evening Bible study, as well as a host of other activities to enjoy such as horseback riding, swimming, a shopping trip, two hayrides and much, much more! For more information, e-mail the camp director at email@example.com or call 1-866-251-5165 then enter mailbox #7128 and leave your name, address and phone number.
Wapanacki Reunion 2017
Did you go to Camp Wapanacki during your younger years? Do you ever long to get together with the people you met there? Your wish has come true! Ken Taylor and his wife are hosting a Camp Wapanacki reunion on the camp grounds in Hardwick, Vt., this summer.
The reunion will be held Aug. 3-6. If you want to join us, visit www.seektheson.org to register. Make sure you sign up early; events are filling up fast. Even if you want to come for just a day or two, and join us for that day’s activities, you need to register ahead of time so that we can get an accurate meal count.
If you have any questions, contact Ken, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Verizon Launches Accessibility Features
Verizon Communications recently launched a resource page for its newly upgraded FiOS accessible video subscription service. The page provides information on FiOS text-to-speech functionality, which was pushed out to subscribers during a recent software update throughout the Verizon network.
The upgraded accessibility features are part of the changes made through the 21st Century Communications & Video Accessibility Act (CVAA), which requires cable providers to make their navigation systems accessible for customers who are blind and visually impaired. These features are currently available on most FiOS systems. To learn more about the accessibility upgrades, including steps on how to activate such features, visit http://www.verizon.com/about/accessibility/text-speech?pos=1.