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On March 6, 2017, I had the opportunity to participate in a unique event at the Massachusetts State House, where Governor Baker issued a proclamation to establish this week, March 6 – 11, as BlindNewWorld week. These six days are dedicated to raising awareness across the country and taking action to help overcome barriers to inclusion for the 125,000 Massachusetts residents with vision loss. BlindNewWorld, a public service social change campaign, is sponsored by Perkins School for the Blind and aims to demystify blindness and visual impairment.

Governor Charlie Baker reads off proclamation at Blind New World week kickoff

Governor Baker reads off proclamation at Blind New World week kickoff

Several of our partners from the blindness community, including Perkins, the Carroll Center for the Blind and the Massachusetts Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired, were also on hand at the event. MCB is pleased to be playing a role in making Massachusetts a more inclusive state. Crucial services that are provided by our agency help break down some of the barriers to full inclusion in schools, workplaces, and communities.

Throughout the week, BlindNewWorld and partners will promote and celebrate new and proactive ways to think about inclusion in settings including employment, education, innovation, and transportation. The week ends with “blind date” activities on Saturday, March 11. In the spirit of BlindNewWorld’s mission, visually impaired people are encouraged to invite sighted people out on the town – and vice versa.

A number of Massachusetts organizations – including many museums, Not Your Average Joe’s restaurants, Showcase Cinemas and Saks Fifth Avenue Boston are partnering with BlindNewWorld and are offering “perks” that will help participants on March 11th make the most of their “blind date.” For a full list of partners and offers, visit blindnewworld.org/blinddate.

BlindNewWorld is all about inclusion, kindness, and open-mindedness – and participation is easy. Here are some ways to get involved:

  • Spread the Word on Social Media
    Follow BlindNewWorld on TwitterFacebookand Instagram throughout the week for ideas, stories and experiences that help build a BlindNewWorld. Go on a “blind date” on March 11th
  • Visit org/blinddate to learn more about the week’s finale and for a list of special offers good on March 11th for “blind date” participants at Massachusetts restaurants, museums, movie theaters and more.
  • Share Your Experiences
    What’s your story? Share your experience online or send an email to explain why building a BlindNewWorld matters to you.

 

To learn more about the BlindNewWorld initiative, visit BlindNewWorld.org.

Written By:


Office of Information Services, Massachusetts Commission for the Blind

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