by Kathy Brockman

We all want to help others and feel useful. Granted, with little or no vision, we sometimes depend on others for assistance. ACB is a great place for all of us to share ideas and promote issues that are important to people who are blind or visually impaired.

How can we help? Many of us already serve on committees or assist with a wide variety of tasks. This is very important. But we all know there is one thing needed to keep any organization running smoothly -- and that is money. The high unemployment rate among blind people makes it difficult for many to stretch a monthly budget. But how about a little bit, say $10, each month? Maybe that's one trip to the movies or a meal out with friends.

Giving a small amount is fairly painless. If you have Internet access, go to www.acb.org. The seventh link down the list is "Make a donation to the American Council of the Blind." Select the link in the paragraph for the Monthly Monetary Support Program; the next page explains the program in more detail. A secure form is available to set up your monthly bank or credit card withdrawal. You can select either the 10th or 22nd of each month, depending upon which date best meets your needs.

You don't have Internet access? No problem. Just call the Minneapolis office toll-free at 1-800-866-3242 or contact Dr. Ron Milliman, who is the chairman of the Monthly Monetary Support Program Committee. His e-mail address is r[email protected], and his phone number is (270) 782-9325.

If you have signed up -- great! However, there is one thing to keep in mind. Occasionally we close a bank account or change credit cards. When that happens, it is very important to contact the Minneapolis office to provide updated information so that monthly withholdings will continue. A number of situations come up each month when payments cannot be processed. This requires a great deal of staff time to resolve. So please keep the office updated.

How does this help your state affiliate? You can designate up to 50 percent of the monthly contribution to go toward an ACB affiliate of your choice. This will help your affiliate continue its programs, too.

Please join with me and others and help both ACB and your affiliate by signing up for the MMS program. Having a steady monthly source of income helps both ACB and the state affiliate plan for financial expenses.

ACB staff can also let people in the community know that our own members are supporting the organization; that is very important to many donors. We appreciate your contributions!

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