Community InvolvementCommunity Involvement
Empowering the blind and visually impaired through meaningful employment is the soul of who we are. But our community is bigger than us. For the greatest impact, we must look beyond.
Providing training and employment opportunities needed to build talent pipelines in the communities we serve.
Investing in developing resources for the community.
Supporting the BVI community in advocacy.
Investing in programs to support our mission.
The William L. Hudson BVI Workforce Innovation CenterThe William L. Hudson BVI Workforce Innovation Center
Due to a lack of accessibility and workplace accommodation, 70% of blind or visually impaired people are unemployed. In 2018, we partnered with Envision, Wichita KS, to help change that.
Named after our former CEO, Bill Hudson, the Workforce Innovation Center, with locations in both Wichita and Durham, focuses on increasing and improving career opportunities for the blind and visually impaired. Here, we train blind and visually impaired workers in technology, health care, sustainability, and other growing fields with the goal of realizing their potential as qualified and productive employees.
Another major reason for low BVI employment is a lack of understanding or accommodation on the part of employers. The Workforce Innovation Center challenges this norm through political advocacy, accessibility education, and promotion of assistive technology.
As the world moves forward, we mustn’t leave the blind or visually impaired behind. The Workplace Innovation Center is a crucial part of that goal.
Duke University Eye CenterDuke University Eye Center
Duke University – based in our hometown of Durham, North Carolina – hosts one of the leading medical research centers in the world. Their work on glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration is at the forefront of science, and in 2015 we helped move forward their dream of bringing sight to all.
LCI was proud to donate $16 million to the Duke University Eye Center for a new clinical pavilion. The new, state-of-the-art Hudson building – named after our former CEO, Bill Hudson – more than quadruples faculty capacity and expands patient visits by over 15,000 per year. The building’s accessibility features were developed with Chris Downey, the only blind architect in the United States.
Other features of the new building include new exam and operating rooms, an occupational therapy center, and new technology to treat glaucoma, retina, low-vision, and cornea patients.