Central Texas Veterans Health Care System
Living Skills consists of communication skills, where Veterans learn to use aids such as tape recorders, Braille devices, typing, handwriting, and financial record keeping. Living Skills also assists veterans in achieving confidence in personal management and daily living skills necessary for independence in homemaking, shopping, cooking, dietary management, and maintenance of the living environment.
Orientation/Mobility focuses on developing the Veteran's capacity to maintain spatial orientation and to move safely and efficiently through their environment. Veterans are trained in the efficient use of remaining senses and in the utilization of protective techniques and devices, such as the long cane, in a variety of settings. Veterans who have completed their Orientation and Mobility training and are confident, independent travelers can apply to be trained on a GPS device which can further increase their independence.
Visual Skills deals with vision rehabilitation. Activities cover assessment, issuance and training with magnification devices such as hand-held magnifiers or closed-circuit television. Training also covers appropriate use of lighting and environmental contrast. Also, there is visual efficiency training, such as eccentric viewing.
The Manual Skills program develops organizational skills, environmental awareness, safe work habits, tactile ability, self-confidence, home mechanics skills, and leisure skills. Staff also design special adaptive devices to meet specific needs of Veterans.
Computer Access Training provides specialized services to eligible blinded Veterans through comprehensive adaptive computer needs assessment, prescription of equipment, training on prescribed equipment, issuance of equipment upon successful completion of training and follow-up technical support as required.
For those who are visually impaired, there are two methods of performing actions on the computer; either by using the computer mouse or by the use of the keyboard. Currently, the Waco Blind Rehab Center Computer Manual is written for each of these methods: Zoom text for enlarging items on the screen (using the mouse) and JAWS for speaking these items (using the keyboard).