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1 Office for Blindness & Vision Services Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS)

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Presentation on theme: "1 Office for Blindness & Vision Services Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS)"— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Office for Blindness & Vision Services Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS)

2 2 The Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS)  The Division of Rehabilitation Services helps individuals with disabilities go to work and remain independent in their homes and communities.  Most people call us “DORS”  DORS is a part of the Maryland State Department of Education.

3 3 Office for Blindness & Vision Services  To meet the unique needs of people who have vision loss, DORS established the Office for Blindness & Vision Services (OBVS).  OBVS staff are in DORS offices throughout Maryland. OBVS also has staff and programs at the Workforce & Technology Center, a DORS facility in northeast Baltimore.

4 4 OBVS Staff  OBVS includes rehabilitation counselors, rehabilitation technologists, case managers and rehabilitation teachers with specialized training in issues of importance to people who are blind, vision impaired or deaf/blind.  They assist people in designing and carrying out plans for employment or independent living.

5 5 DORS/OBVS Services DORS and OBVS provide a wide range of personalized services to help people reach their employment or independent living goals. These include:  Career guidance and assessment  Assistive technology assessments and services  Post-secondary education and training  Vocational training  Orientation and mobility  Job placement and follow-up

6 6 OBVS  The Independent Living Older Blind (ILOB) program provides independent living services to individuals over the age of 55.  In the ILOB program, rehabilitation teachers provide in-home personalized services that may include Braille instruction, mobility training and training to perform tasks such as household care, bill paying and personal care.

7 7 Maryland Business Enterprise Program for the Blind (MBEPB)  OBVS also administers the Maryland Business Enterprise Program for the Blind (MBEPB), which prepares individuals to operate successful retail concession and food service operations in public facilities.

8 8 Who does DORS/OBVS serve?  DORS serves people with a wide variety of physical, emotional, cognitive, sensory and learning disabilities.  The Office for Blindness & Vision Services serves those whose primary disability is blindness or vision loss.  This includes high school students who may be in special education programs with IEPs, those who have a 504 plan, receive special accommodations in school or have significant health issues. 

9 9 Who does DORS/OBVS serve?  Individuals whose primary disability is blindness or vision loss will be assigned to an OBVS counselor, case manager or rehabilitation teacher.

10 10 Payment for services  There is no payment required for such services as career guidance and counseling, assessments or job placement.  There is a sliding scale based on family income for most other services.  Individuals who receive Social Security disability benefits are not required to contribute to the costs of services.

11 11 DORS works for people with blindness or vision loss  Last year, over 150 people who are blind or had a vision loss went to work after taking part in DORS services.  Their average hourly wage was $  OBVS also helped over 1200 people in the Independent Living Older Blind program.

12 12 MBEPB  Sixty-two (62) licensed managers in the Maryland Business Enterprise Program for the Blind (MBEPB) operate 80 vending facilities. Their average annual salary is $47,000.

13 13 To learn more contact DORS/OBVS Office for Blindness and Vision Services 2301 Argonne Drive, Baltimore, MD Phone: Toll-free: OBVS Regional Offices Annapolis  Serving Anne Arundel, Calvert, Caroline, Cecil, Charles, Dorchester, Kent, Prince George’s, Queen Anne’s, St. Mary’s, Somerset, Talbot, Wicomico and Worchester Counties Baltimore  Serving Baltimore City and Baltimore, Howard and Harford Counties Cumberland  Serving Allegany, Carroll, Frederick, Garrett, Montgomery and Washington Counties

14 14 Visit us online:

15 15 Nancy S. Grasmick State Superintendent of Schools Robert A. Burns Assistant State Superintendent in Rehabilitation Services January 2009


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