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AFBAmerican Foundation®
for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

AFB and Reader's Digest Partners for Sight Foundation Announce Joint Effort to Empower Individuals with Vision Loss

Partnership will upgrade VisionAware web resource

New York, NY (August 5, 2011)—The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) and Reader's Digest Partners for Sight Foundation are teaming up to provide a dynamic and comprehensive web resource to help the 25 million Americans with vision loss.

The new site will integrate VisionAware, a popular web and social networking resource sponsored by Partners for Sight, into the AFB family of web sites, which serves millions of people annually by delivering information and resources about living with vision loss. The site is expected to be unveiled in early 2012 and will target working age adults, senior citizens and the families and caregivers of people with visual impairments.

This collaboration comes at a time when more and more Americans are beginning to experience vision loss due to an increase in diabetes rates and age-related eye conditions such as macular degeneration and glaucoma. It is well-documented that the majority of these individuals do not have regular access to vision rehabilitation services and information that can help increase independence. Partners for Sight and AFB's goal is to fill this information gap.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with Reader's Digest Partners for Sight Foundation, and integrating VisionAware into the AFB family of web programs," said Carl R. Augusto, AFB President and CEO. "Many people don't know where to turn for help and information when they're first diagnosed with vision loss. This site will provide a one-stop location for the resources available to those experiencing vision problems."

"We expect this partnership to significantly improve the quality of life of adults with vision loss by raising awareness of vision rehabilitation services and providing information, resources and customized guidance that can help people live more active, independent, full lives," said Susan Olivo, Executive Director, Reader’s Digest Partners for Sight Foundation.

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About AFB

The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) is a national nonprofit that expands possibilities for people with vision loss. AFB's priorities include broadening access to technology; elevating the quality of information and tools for the professionals who serve people with vision loss; and promoting independent and healthy living for people with vision loss by providing them and their families with relevant and timely resources. Headquartered in New York, AFB is proud to house the Helen Keller Archives and honor the more than 40 years that Helen Keller worked tirelessly with AFB.

About Reader's Digest Partners for Sight Foundation

Since 1955, Reader's Digest Partners for Sight Foundation (PFS) has been a vital source of support on local, regional and national levels for the blind and visually impaired. With an emphasis on connecting people in need with resources and services, the Foundation has provided new technology, new opportunity and new hope for hundreds of thousands of people across the United States.

Contact:

John Mackin

AFB Communications

212-502-7617

jmackin@afb.net

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