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AFBAmerican Foundation®
for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

Alphapointe - AFB Directory Profile

General Information

Alphapointe
7501 Prospect Ave.
Kansas City, MO 64132
(816) 421-5848 (Local)
(816) 237-2019 (Fax)
info@alphapointe.org
http://www.alphapointe.org

Brief Description

Vision loss doesn’t have to mean a loss of independence…Alphapointe was founded in 1911, incorporated in 1916 and received 501c3 status in 1941. In 1918, the visually impaired started manufacturing brooms, mats and other hand-made goods.1950s started manufacturing pens. 1950s, also helped establish Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired. 1985, began serving seniors. 1993, KC Association for the Blind changed name to Alphapointe Association for the Blind. 1995, began manufacturing plastic products. 2000, further expanded its services by implementing the area’s only Comprehensive Vision Rehabilitation Center. 2010, opened Low Vision Clinic. 2012, the Association for the Blind was removed from the Alphapointe name. 2014, merged with the NY City Industries for the Blind to expand manufacturing efforts and job placement. Today we are the 25th largest manufacture in KC and the 3rd largest employer of individuals who are legally blind in America (223). In 2016, we directly served 1,808 individuals and through community outreach educated 5,648 individuals. For more than 100 years, Alphapointe has provided employment, education and rehabilitation services to the visually impaired.

Hours of operation: Mon.-Fri. 8:00 AM-5:00 PM.
Clients served on average per year: 1800+
Number of staff: 393
Staff description: We are a manufacturer of plastic products and office products. We also have a state-of-the-art call center within inbound and outbound calls. We have credentialed rehab and education staff that help the visually impaired receive the training they need to be self-sufficient.
Geographic area served: All of Missouri, Eastern Kansas. Referrals accepted from other states. We also have employment opportunities and job training in the state of NY.
Publications: ViewPointe Newsletter, Annual Report - social media: Facebook & Twitter & YouTube

Locations

3611 14th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11218

Staff

Clay Berry, Director of Education & Rehabilitation, (816) 421-5848, cberry@alphapointe.org
Amy Campbell, VP, Human Resources, (816) 237-2007, acampbell@alphapointe.org
Dan Dorfsman, Supervisor, Human Resources, (347) 227-3326, ddorfsman@alphapointe.org
Gina Gowin, VP Programs & Services, (816) 237-2025, ggowin@alphapointe.org
Reinhard Mabry, President/CEO, (816) 237-2031, rmabry@alphapointe.org
Irene Schwartz, Director of Rehabilitation Services, (347) 227-3333, ischwartz@alphapointe.org

Services Offered

Services for Adults

  • Assistive Products
    • Sells assistive products.
  • Braille and Reading Instruction
    • Braille instruction is targeted toward the goal of providing students with an alternative to print for daily use at home, school, and workplace.
  • Computer Training/Assistive Technology
    • Offers training in the use of assistive technology.
  • Counseling
    • Offers counseling.
  • Daily Living Skills/Independent Living Skills Training
    • Provides training in activities of daily living, communication (braille and computer instruction) skills and vocational rehabilitation.
  • Employment/Job Training
    • Comprehensive Rehabilitation Services concentrate on individual training and are administered by professionally certified and licensed staff. All services are focused on client needs for immediate community employment. Services include adjustment to blindness and counseling needs; independence in orientation, mobility and daily living skills; academic, written and vocational skills; computer aptitudes and interests. Educational services include school-to-work and college prep.
  • In-Home Services
    • Provides in-home assistance for seniors.
  • Information and Referral
    • Provides referrals to other agencies.
  • Library Services
    • Provides braille transcription and cassette tapes.
  • Low Vision Services
    • Offers low vision services.
  • Reading Services
    • Offers reading services.
  • Recreation Services
    • Offers recreation acitivities for seniors.
  • Services for Seniors
    • We provide older adults with vision loss the tools to maximize their functional vision and independence. Services are provided at the clinic or in-home by an occupational therapist specializing in low vision. Individualized training is provided based on an evaluation of the person's functional vision and activities of daily living. Patients are instructed in adaptive techniques and equipment to improve their independent living skills.
  • Travel/Orientation and Mobility
    • Provides orientation and mobility training.

Services for Children

  • Assessment
    • The first step for individuals entering Alphapointe is an evaluation of their current skill levels. The referring agency provides Alphapointe with medical and visual disability reports. All Comprehensive Rehabilitation Services are administered by professionally certified and licensed staff. An evaluation meeting is led by the client during the last week of testing and includes family members/ parents, the instructors, and the referral source. A written report detailing the outcomes and any recommendations for training is provided to the referring agency.
  • Braille and Reading Instruction
    • Communication Skills Training addresses alternative techniques and adaptive aids for written communication, access techniques and resources, and traditional academic review. Braille instruction is targeted toward the goal of providing students with an alternative to print for daily use at home, school, and workplace.
  • Computer Training/Assistive Technology
    • Technology Evaluation and Instruction can be provided as a single service on site at Alphapointe, in the community,or a student's home. Emphasis is placed on the use of computer technology typically found in the workplace and in college setting. Internet and e-mail access is taught as are essential commands of the access device of choice. Students are exposed to a range of voice synthesizers, screen reading and magnification programs.
  • Counseling
    • Adjustment to blindness or any disability can be extremely challenging and individuals may experience feelings of denial, shock, preoccupation with the way things should have been, depression, anger and, finally, acceptance. Rehabilitation counseling services are provided to assist students in making the transition to acceptance of his or her disability. Making this transition also assists with developing an increased self-esteem, professional confidence and an ability to advocate for oneself. Services are provided by a nationally certified rehabilitation counselor.
  • Daily Living Skills/Independent Living Skills Training
    • ADL services focus on the goal of preparing students to assume as much responsibility as appropriate for meeting their own needs in a home, apartment, or supervised living setting.

      Services in the ADL area begin with an evaluation of the student's current skills. The majority of the evaluation is based upon task performance. At the conclusion of the evaluation, the results are reviewed and mutually agreeable training goals are established. These guide the ADL training services.

      In general, the curriculum covers the following: addressing personal needs, practical skills, and community integration.

      Addressing personal needs is the first priority and ensures that the student has been exposed to techniques that meet his or her individual needs with regard to personal care, grooming, hygiene, and eating etiquette.

      Addressing practical skills necessary for independent living is the next priority. Training emphasizes the use of techniques, adaptive equipment, and reinforcement practice to address needs in time telling with adaptive time pieces, telephoning, laundry and clothing care, housekeeping, meal preparation, labeling, basic organizational techniques, first aid, money identification and management, and other functional skills.

      Community integration is the ultimate goal for all students in the ADL area. Training addresses such skills as shopping, dining out, accessing personal services within the community, and other special interests. Skills’ training is reinforced by experiences within the community.

      As part of ADL, the student is introduced to a variety of aids and appliances that might enhance his or her efficiency and independence within the home or with self care.
  • Education Services
    • The College Preparation Program at Alphapointe provides students with skills necessary to achieve success in a college environment.
  • Employment/Job Training
    • Student Transitional Employment Program (STEP), is an eight-week program that provides competitive work experience to high school youth who are visually impaired (ages 15-20). Vocational exploration, identifying preferences and abilities as well as learning work-related behaviors; and self-advocacy are included in this program. STEP provides a foundation for the school-to-work transition, facilitating students to practice personal independence through work, goal-setting and community involvement. Students participating in STEP secure job placement in a supervised community environment for the purpose of building a resume that can help them secure future employment during and after their formalized education. Youth in this program work alongside a short-term job coach and learn orientation and mobility (O&M) skills. Learned O&M skills reduce isolation by giving youth a "common ground" for interacting with family, friends, and future employers; it also enables youth to safely explore and interact with the world, including the home, school, and community. Youth work with the Manager of Youth Services as well as the Manager of Employment Services. STEP participants will also use their learned social skills to interact and work with co-workers and supervisors and be able to fulfill workplace expectations and goals.
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