The Vigilant Blog

How often have you had a question you felt too shy to ask? Sometimes you work up the courage and just ask. At other times, it’s better to read about someone else’s experience at your own speed and in the privacy of your own space.

Our blog is a collection of posts aimed at stimulating discussion about assistive technology, independent living, and blindness philosophy. Please comment freely to keep the discussion moving, and please share content you find thought-provoking with your social networks to help spread the discussion to people we might otherwise not reach.

And, please don’t forget to check out the publications from our parent organization. The Braille Monitor, our general magazine, and Future Reflections, our publication for parents, are just two examples of the excellent resources you’ll find in our NFB library.

Do you want to write a guest post? Send us a note, and tell us about your idea!

Coalition of Disability Groups Demand Access to Virginia’s Inaccessible Absentee Voting

For Immediate Release

Media Contacts

American Council of the Blind: Clark Rachfal, crachfal@acb.org , 202-467-5081

disAbility Law Center of Virginia: Colleen Miller, colleen.miller@dlcv.org , (804) 225-2042

National Federation of the Blind: Chris Danielsen, cdanielsen@nfb.org , 410-262-1281

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Facts about Blindness... According to Me

Editor's Note: The following first appeared on my personal blog at JoeOrozco.com, currently under reconstruction. Please get in touch with your own questions and answers, and who knows, maybe we could create some sort of resource playfully answering some of the more popular curiosities.

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Top Ten Benefits of Being a Blind Parent

By Jessica Reed

Editor's Note: Parenting is hard, no matter which way you look at it. In this follow-up piece, however, Jessica points out in no particular order a few items for which we might embrace some advantages as blind parents.

10. When changing a poopy diaper you don’t have to see it.

9. When littles are sleeping, you can still sneak into their bedroom to grab things without turning on a light and unleashing the monster of a woken child.

True North: Discovering the Strength of Your Inner Compass

By Kathryn Webster

Editor’s Note: During the last weekend in January 2019, Kathryn organized a joint conference for Project RISE participants and leaders from the National Association of Blind Students. On Saturday evening, the two groups came together for a banquet and keynote speech that merged the goals of both tracks in one inspirational presentation. Following is the text of Kathryn’s remarks.

It is not about chapter size. It is about chapter effectiveness.

By John Bailey

Over the years, I have had the pleasure of visiting many of our state NFB chapters.

One common wish I heard from chapter leaders was that they were frustrated because they didn’t have the membership numbers they wanted. After listening to them for a while, I realized they were comparing themselves to some idealized group with lots and lots of members, resources, and money in the bank.

Hadley: The Hidden Gem for Blind Entrepreneurs

Reprinted from my personal blog.

After the economic bust in 2008 many people went into business for themselves, and while it is always a good idea to be educated on the nuances of planning and launching a new business, you don’t necessarily need a full college degree.

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Quick Tips - Making Our Meetings and Workshops More Accessible, Productive, and Fun

By Jeremy Grandstaff

At the National Federation of the Blind of Virginia (NFBV) we have a number of meetings. At chapter meetings for example, we invite people to come to learn about NFBV, engage more effectively in our work, and to learn more about our own abilities to transform our lives to achieve what we want.

How to be More Popular

By John Bailey

I was honored to be a part of the South Eastern Division weekend held at our National Center in Baltimore in early August. It was great to catch up with old friends and make lots of new ones.

One of the activities during the weekend I particularly found interesting was the breakout session where the students talked about the challenges they were facing and the ensuing conversations about how to resolve them.

Do You Want to be Your Own Boss?

I've heard blind people give advice that in today's job market, starting your own business is a viable option. And, it is, but most people fail to see the reality of going at it alone. I run a freelance copywriting business outside of my day job. It keeps me afloat when our federal government shuts down, and I have to go to work without getting paid. I figure maybe one day I'll grow old and retire from catching bad people, but when that day comes, I had better be prepared to make a smart transition.

Here's a blog post I previously wrote for my freelance blog:

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Nonprofit Development: Grant Writing 101

In the coming years our affiliate will implement a diverse fundraising strategy to make it possible for us to have more services like Project RISE. One of those funding strategies will likely be grant writing, and while grant writing will make the most sense at the affiliate level, where we can project the greatest impacts, that does not mean chapters and divisions cannot pursue their own grant writing strategies to help fund activities they would like to sponsor. Here's a starting point to thinking about grant writing.

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