Adopt Adaptive Equipment
Joe Ruffalo, Chair
Individuals wishing to donate equipment are matched with individuals requesting certain equipment. Our most popular items are CCTVs (Close Circuit TVs). The donor and the recipient must make their own arrangements for the pick up of equipment.
BELL (Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning) Academy
Mary Jo Partyka, Coordinator
The BELL Academy is a two-week program for visually impaired and blind children ages 4 through 12 who have had minimal exposure to braille. It is also for those who could use more exposure to braille and blindness skills. It is an opportunity for positive role models with our blind mentors, both adults and teens. We have a “braille-rocks” attitude, with fun, games, field trips, and friendships.
Blind Children’s Resource Center
The Blind Children’s Resource Center is a collection of items useful for the education and development of blind children.
Blind Merchants/Entrepreneurs Committee
Dan Facchini, Chair
The purpose of the Blind Merchants/Entrepreneurs Committee is to function as a mechanism through which blind merchants/entrepreneurs and interested sighted persons can come together in local, state and national meetings to plan and carry out programs to improve business opportunities and equality of life for the blind.
Braille Mentoring Program
Mary Jo Partyka, Coordinator
Do you know someone who is having challenges reading print due to conditions such as glaucoma, Retinitis pigmentosa, etc? Or are you the person with these challenges who would like to learn how to write down important telephone numbers, recipes, or labels for kitchen items? If you can answer “yes” to either of these questions, you may be interested in participating in our Braille Mentoring Program sponsored by the Braille Division of the National Federation of the Blind of New Jersey. Members of our Braille Division will try to find someone close to where you live who can get together with you on a weekly basis and help you learn the Braille alphabet, numbers, etc. There is no charge for this service and you may find that you will be able to read and write the information you need to become more independent.
The National Federation of the Blind has teamed up with GreenDrop to collect donations of clothing and household items. The funds raised from this program go to the National Federation of the Blind general fund to support programs for blind STEM students, veterans, and seniors, as well as the ongoing efforts to improve equality for the blind.
Help America Vote Act (HAVA) Liaison
Rebecca Bryant, Liaison
Anthony Lanzilotti, Co-Liaison
Andrew Rees, Co-Liaison
The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) has enabled voters with disabilities to fully exercise the fundamental right to vote privately and independently by requiring that every polling place have at least one accessible voting system for all federal elections. In addition, many states have enacted legislation to require at least one accessible voting system in each polling place for all state and local elections. An in-depth video on the subject is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_yTfEO2Kz8.
KNFB Reader Liaison
The KNFB Reader app is a revolutionary tool that you can use, with the touch of a single button, to read virtually any type of printed text, including mail, receipts, class handouts, memos, and many other documents. The KNFB Reader is now fully sponsored by the NFB! To learn more about the app and how to download, visit www.nfb.org/knfbreader.
These are the people responsible for alerting the members of the state affiliate about pending legislation which impacts the blind and actions that need to be taken in response to such legislation. They also coordinate meetings between members and New Jersey Congressional representatives during NFB’s Washington Seminar.
Liability Insurance Committee
Phil Harrison, Chair
The state affiliate has secured liability insurance for all state activities, local chapter and division meetings, and for fundrraisers.
Amo Musharraf, Coordinator
To assist with promoting the state affiliate’s state convention by providing audio and photographs for the state website.
Rick Fox, Chair
As we grow the affiliate’s local chapters and divisions, please contact Rick for an overview with helpful procedures.
NFB-NEWSLINE® is a FREE service that allows blind and print disabled individuals to listen to over 400 publications. The New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired is the state’s sponsor.
PAC (Pre-Authorized Contribution) Plan Coordinator
Brian Mackey, Chair
The PAC Plan is a method where individuals or groups of individuals can pre-approve a certain amount of money, as little as $5, each month and have those funds contribute to programs at the National Federation of the Blind. These programs include the distribution of free literature, funding the Free White Cane program, funding the Free Slate and Stylus program, fund legal battles, assisting with the national scholarship programs with funding, and provide free web hosting through NFBNet.org.
Provides direction to the leaders and members of NFBNJ so that proper procedures are followed during meetings and conference calls.
Public Relations/Press Core Committee
Writes and distributes press releases to local and state media to promote activities throughout the state.
Ryan Stevens, Chair
This committee reviews issues to discuss what is needed to present as resolutions at the state convention. Resolutions are the policy statements of the affiliate.
Mary Fernandez, Chair
This committee determines which individual(s) earn academic scholarships at our State Convention.
Social Media Coordinator
Alice Eaddy, Coordinator
This individual is responsible for posting any items of interest onto our social media pages.
Rosa Santiago, Chair
The goals, purposes, and objectives to establishing and developing a Spanish committee through the NFBNJ is to bring together blind and interested sighted persons that are Spanish speaking to an organization that assists in believing in raising expectations to create possibilities and higher expectations to its members.
Sports & Recreation Committee
Linda Melendez, Chair
The goals, purposes, and objectives in establishing and developing a Sports & Recreation committee through the NFBNJ is to bring together blind and interested sighted persons to participate in various sports & recreational activities on a state, local and personal level. This committee will identify different sports and recreation activities for individuals who are blind, and their friends and family.
The Sounding Board
Kathy Gabry, Editor
Mary Jo Partyka, Co-Editor
Barbara Shallit, Advertising Manager
The Sounding Board is our semi-annual newsletter with information to read and share with others. Reflections from our membership, human interest stories, background of individuals and issues pertaining to the blind community are highlighted.
Vehicle Donation Program
The National Federation of the Blind’s Vehicle Donation program accepts almost any vehicle, including cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles, and recreational vehicles. All donations may be eligible for a tax deduction on the donor’s federal income tax return, and the NFB receives an average of $360 for each donated vehicle.
The webmaster is responsible for the upkeep of the affiliate site with informative information, to raise expectations and to provide information to the visitor to learn the skills, techniques to live the life you want; blindness is not what holds us back.
White Cane Committee
The national organization provides free white canes, please visit www.nfb.org/free-cane-program to order your free white cane. After receiving your free white cane, you will receive a welcome email and a follow up call from a member in your area to discuss numerous possibilities to learn the truth about blindness.