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Oklahoma League for the Blind

       501 N. Douglas Ave
    Oklahoma City, OK 73106

                            OUR MISSION

Empowering blind and vision impaired individuals to achieve their
 maximum level of personal independence through employment,
                 rehabilitation, and outreach.

                  OLB FULFILLS OUR MISSION BY:

     Providing social, vocational, rehabilitative and educational
      services for people who are blind;
     Serving as an advocate for the interests of the blind;
     Sharing the belief that people who are blind are entitled to and are
      capable of achieving full autonomy and independence;
     Educating the community about blindness and the prevention of
      vision loss.
                          A BRIEF BACKGROUND
Oklahoma League for the Blind is a private, non-profit agency founded in 1949 to
empower blind and vision impaired individuals to achieve their maximum
level of personal Independence through education, employment, self-advocacy,
self-determination, social enterprise, and rehabilitation.

OLB currently employs over 100 blind and vision impaired persons who supply
contracted goods and services to government agencies; manufacture a diverse line
of products for commercial and residential use; and perform specialized services for
major corporations while exceeding quality expectations.

                         OUR SERVICES INCLUDE:

Vision Rehabilitation Services                      Social Services
Braille Transcription                               Transportation Services
Employment                                          Children & Youth Services
Community Outreach Programs

       It’s important to remember . . . these services could not be provided without
volunteers. Your generosity and time make an impact and serve a need.

The Oklahoma League for the Blind accepts volunteers from grade six, with no
ceiling on age.

Volunteers must complete an enrollment form to be complete with three reference
checks and be interviewed by the Director of Development.

Volunteers will be assigned according to volunteer preference and OLB need and
will be trained by the department supervisor.

If there is not an immediate opening, applications will remain on active file until an
appropriate assignment can be made.
                       OUR COMMITMENT TO YOU

A tour of the facility will be provided by the Director of Development.

You will be trained by the supervisor of the assigned department on your volunteer

If your position entails public contact, you will receive a nametag to be worn during
volunteer hours.

OLB provides our own fleet of vehicles to transport clients and vision impaired staff
to and from appointments. We also provide liability coverage for volunteers. This
insurance protects the OLB and also provides supplemental insurance for drivers
who do not have sufficient coverage of their own. An individual’s own automobile
insurance coverage is primary in the event of any injury connected with automobiles.
You may be asked to use your own vehicle. OLB will provide mileage
reimbursement based on standard IRS mileage rate.

Any authorized expense incurred by a volunteer is promptly reimbursed.

                       YOUR COMMITMENT TO US
That you consider your assignment a commitment.

That you will notify the department supervisor and/or the Director of Development of
anticipated absence or resignation. Once assigned, we’ll be depending on you!

That you will be willing to say “no”. Volunteering should be fun, as well as
rewarding, and you should not accept duties or requests that you know you wouldn’t

That you respect the confidentiality of our clients and our agency.

That you will serve as a public relations ambassador in the community.

That you will report to your supervisor or the Director of Development any problems
that you may have with your assignment.
                           THE OLB VOLUNTEER
There is no profile of a “typical” volunteer.

They come from every aspect of life and range in age from 12 to 80-something.
They have varying race, religious and ethnic backgrounds. They may have
advanced degrees or not have graduated from high school. They may have a
disability which does not deter them from some volunteer duties. They may be
single, young marrieds or retirees; employed or unemployed.

What our volunteers DO have in common is the desire to be useful and to keep
active. They prefer service to soap operas and enjoy the interaction with clients,
staff and other volunteers.

They have fun and they are appreciated.
Volunteer positions are available in many areas, and most are during agency hours
of 8:00 AM and 4:00 PM. You may choose to help with:

   Counters   Stuffers
   Data Entry

   In-Home Reader – read to blind and vision impaired individuals in their homes or
   in nursing homes

   Table Captain for Annual Fundraising Luncheon
   Host Envision Us Tour
   Solicit donations, in-kind donations and sponsorships from the corporate
   Serve on committees for special events and fundraisers
   ForeVision Golf Tournament
   Beep Baseball Tournament
   Oklahomans Without Limits (OWL) Summer & Fall Youth Camps

   Transport clients to/from OLB activities
   Transport vision impaired staff to/from appointments



                         JOB DESCRIPTIONS

                        DIRECT MAIL HANDLERS
                            (Incoming mail)
Supervisor: Contributions Coordinator.
Time: Flexible; Monday, Wednesday, & Friday – 8:00 AM until finished

     1. Follow instructions.
     2. Open envelopes containing donations.
     3. Verify exact amount of donations.
     4. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Knowledge of counting and wrapping money.
      2. Operate an adding machine.
      3. Ability to keep information confidential.


      1. Volunteer enrollment form
      2. Three reference checks

                        DIRECT MAIL HANDLERS
                                 (Outgoing mail)
Supervisor: Contributions Coordinator.
Time: Tuesday, Wednesday, & Friday – 8:00 AM until finished

     1. Follow instructions.
     2. Knowledge of counting and wrapping money.
     3. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Ability to follow instructions.
      2. Reliable and dependable.
      3. Operate an adding machine.
      4. Relate well to co-workers.

      1. Volunteer enrollment form
     2. Three reference checks
                    MAIL PROGRAM DATA ENTRY
Supervisor: Development Assistant
Time: Flexible - Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings

     1. Enter donor names and donations into computer program.
     2. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Knowledge of computer.
      2. Keyboard skills.
      3. Ability to keep information confidential.

     1. Volunteer enrollment form
     2. Three reference checks

                             IN-HOME READER
Supervisor: Director of Development
Time: Flexible; agreed upon by client and volunteer

     1. Read items such as mail and other important documents in client’s home.
     2. Help with other small projects: recording information, letter writing ~ as
     3. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Attend a brief orientation session with client, Vision Rehabilitation
      Therapist and/or Director of Development.
      2. Pleasant personality.
      3. Good speaking voice; good diction.
      4. Ability to keep information confidential.
      5. Ability to set boundaries.

     6. Volunteer enrollment form
     7. Three reference checks
     8. OSBI Background check
                    ENVISIONING THE FUTURE
                    FUNDRAISING LUNCHEON
                           ASK EVENT

 1. Fill table of 10 guests at Ask Event. (This will mean confirming 14 guests by
     reminding them personally by phone or e-mail the day before.)

 2. Make sure that at least 20% of guests have attended a Point of Entry –
     Envisioning the Future Tour by the April 26, 2006 Event.

 3. Mail Save-the-Date cards to each guest as they accept your invitation.

 4. Keep a separate list of those unable to attend who have said they would like to
     receive more information about the organization.

 5. Submit final guest list to the organization by 3 weeks before the Ask Event.

 6. Arrive at the event at least 30 minutes early to greet your guests and pick up
     your Table Captain day-of-event packet.

 7. Pass out pledge cards and envelopes as instructed during the Pitch.

 8. Set an example for your guests by enjoying the event and filling out your own
     pledge card at this time. Guests will be looking to you at that moment to see
     what they are supposed to do.

 9. Collect completed pledge cards and envelopes from your guests and turn
     them in to the event coordinator before you leave the event.

10. Call your guests within 2 days to thank them for coming and get their impressions
     and feedback. (Do not ask them for money.)
Supervisor: Director of Development
Time: Flexible

     1. Attend committee meetings set by committee chairman.
     2 Perform duties as requested by committee chairman.
     3. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Willingness to approach corporate community for donations, etc.
      2. Pleasant personality.
      3. Knowledge of business community leaders.
      4. Willingness to help the day of event, help with ticket sales and set up of

     5. Volunteer enrollment form
     6. Three reference checks

                           OFFICE ASSISTANTS
Supervisor: Various department heads
Time: Flexible: Monday through Friday 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM

     1. Perform clerical duties under direction of various departments,
         agency wide.
     2. Make telephone calls as required by departments.
     3. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Ability to file.
      2. Basic computer skills (Excel, Word, PowerPoint).
      3. Ability to read clearly.
      4. Ability to learn office procedure.
      5. Pleasant speaking voice.

     1. Volunteer enrollment form
     2. Three reference checks
Supervisor: Director of Special Programs & Services
Time: Flexible: Monday through Friday 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM (and as needed)

       1. Transport clients to and from activities at OLB.
       2. Assist clients from their home to the car when necessary.
       3. Assist clients from car into OLB when necessary.
       4. Transport vision impaired staff to appointments.
       5. Pick up and deliver assigned merchandise.
       6. Report any mechanical disorders and/or symptoms.
       7. Record mileage, destination, etc. in logbook located in each vehicle.
       8. Log volunteer hours.

      1. Current OK driver’s license.
      2. Good driving record.
      3. Pleasant personality.
      4. Ability to get along with people of varying disabilities.
      5. Ability to follow directions.

     1. Volunteer enrollment form
     2. Three reference checks
     3. Motor Vehicle Registration check
                         WHAT IS “BLINDNESS?”
Individuals may have a complete loss of sight, to varying degrees of residual vision.
Simply stated, a person is blind if he can, with corrective lenses, see at a distance
of 20 feet what a person with normal vision can see at 200 feet. Visual field loss of
80 degrees or more in both eyes is also legal blindness.

Most blind people have some residual vision, varying in degree from the ability to
perceive light to reading normal size print with the help of corrective lenses or low
vision aids. Only a small percentage of blind persons are totally blind with no light
perception at all.

The major causes of blindness are diabetes, glaucoma, cataracts, macular
degeneration, and injury.

                        SIGHTED GUIDE TECHNIQUE
As a volunteer for OLB, you will probably have occasion to walk with a blind person
for a few feet down the hall or for a longer distance outside. The following
information is presented to help you feel at ease when you are walking with a
person who can use some help:

       1. To begin, ask the blind person if he would like your help and if he would
          like to walk with you.
       2. Ask if he would like to take your arm; then gently touch his arm with your
          elbow or the back of your hand.
       3. Let the blind person grasp your arm above your elbow.
       4. Walk a half step ahead of him at normal pace or a bit slower, according
          to the blind person’s physical condition or preference. Remember that
          your path must be wider than usual since you are now 2 people wide.

These are the four basic steps for sighted guide technique. These steps can be
adapted to each individual and each situation. For instance, if the person needs
more physical support, he can lean on your arm instead of holding your elbow

You and your companion are bound to encounter some obstacles as you walk
together. Here are some suggestions for how to handle some of these situations:

       Narrow passages – Put your arm, the arm that the blind person is holding,
       behind your back. This indicates that the blind person should line up directly
       behind you and straighten his arm out so he’s not stepping on your heels.
       By going single file, both of you will fit through an opening that is one
       person wide.
      Stairs or curbs – Stop for a moment before stepping on stairs or curbs. The
      hesitation will indicate that a step is coming. Describe to the person the
      direction and type of steps you are coming to. For instance, “These steps go
      up to a landing and turn right.” Mention to the blind person if a stair railing
      is available; using a railing might help him to be more comfortable and

      Doors – Tell the blind person if the door opens toward or away from you and
      whether to the right or left. If a blind person is on the door’s side, he can
      help hold the door open as you go through. If the blind person is on the
      opposite side from the door, he can switch to your other arm as you both go
      through. Use the Narrow Passage technique, with arm behind you, as you
      walk through the doorway.

      Chairs – Put the blind person’s hand on the back or arm of the chair. He will
      sweep the seat with his other hand and seat himself.

      Cars – Tell your companion which way the car is facing and whether it is a
      two-door or four door. You can place the blind person’s hand on the door
      handle and he will get in by himself or you can open the door for him and
      place his hands on the roof, allowing him to seat himself.

      Cane Travel – the white cane carried by a legally blind person is used to
      sense his environment one step ahead of him, and to identify him to others
      as being blind. When traveling with a sighted guide, he may or may not
      wish to use his cane.

      Dog Guide Travel – A dog guide follows the instructions of his blind master to
      lead him safely on his route. A blind person who has a dog may or may not
      want to use a sighted guide when he and his dog are walking with a sighted
      person. When the dog guide is in the harness, he is working for his blind
      master and should not be petted or distracted by anyone.

1. When moving about the building, always walk to the right. Be prepared for a
   blind person coming around a corner with or without and aid (cane or dog).

2. ANY time you meet a vision impaired person, identify yourself and, if you think it
   is appropriate, ask if assistance is needed, and how you can help. Do not
   assume that help is required.

3. Talk in a normal tone of voice; the blind person is usually not hard of hearing.

4. Do not adapt your language to avoid using word like “look”, “see”, and “blind”.
   “Looking at” means learning about and “seeing” means understanding, not just

5. A vision impaired person doing everyday activities is not “amazing”. . . it’s
   normal. Have the same expectations for persons with visual impairments that
    you would have for everyone else. People will tell you if an activity poses a

           Thank you for your dedicated service as an OLB volunteer!
             We hope your volunteer experience will be wonderful.

                        Receipt and Acknowledgment

I have received a copy of the volunteer manual of the Oklahoma
League for the Blind (OLB). I acknowledge my obligation to read and
understand its contents, and further acknowledge and agree that:

   The manual only is intended to provide a general overview of OLB
    volunteer opportunities and responsibilities. It also serves as a tool
    for volunteers and employees to understand the role of volunteers
    and the importance of the volunteer program to OLB.

Date of volunteer manual referred to herein:

Volunteer Name (Please Print)

____________________________________ ___________________
Volunteer Signature             Date

Please sign and date the Receipt and Acknowledgement form and
return it to the Director of Development. Thank you.
NAME ________________________________________ DATE ______________
ADDRESS _________________________________________________________
CITY ____________________ STATE ________________ ZIP ______________
PHONE (DAY) ____________________ PHONE (EVENING) _________________
DATE OF BIRTH (MM/DD/YY) __________________________________________
EMERGENCY CONTACT _____________________ PHONE _________________
LICENSE PLATE # _______________ DRIVER’S LICENSE # ________________

           VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES AT OLB (Check all areas of interest)

___ Development Dept.           ___ Office Assistant                      ___

Drivers                       ___ Data Entry                ___ Health Fairs

            ___ Mailroom                          ___ In-Home Reading Program

___ Special Events              ___ File Clerk
___ Flexible         ___ Weekdays         ___ Evenings         ___ Weekends

Best days and times _______________________________________________________________

Days/Times NOT Available __________________________________________________________

How did you learn of OLB? _________________________________________________________

      PLEASE LIST 3 PERSONAL REFERENCES (List only 1 family member as a reference)

1. _____________________________________________ Phone ______________________

2. _____________________________________________ Phone ______________________

3. _____________________________________________ Phone ______________________

   Have you ever been convicted of a felony or a possession charge?
       _____ NO _____ YES (If yes, explain in space below).
   As an OLB volunteer, would you be interested in receiving “Sighted
        Guide” training by our Certified Rehabilitation Therapist?
                      ________YES _______NO

  Individuals who wish to volunteer in our in-home reading program will
 be required to have an OSBI background check. Individuals who wish
to drive OLB vehicles will be required to submit a copy of his/her current
   driver’s license as well as a copy of his/her insurance card. A Motor
                Vehicle Report (MVR) will be run by the OLB.

OLB reserves the right to refuse any individual contact with clients, use
     of OLB vehicles, or any volunteer opportunities at any time.

    If under the age of 18 years old, OLB requires a parent/guardian
               signature to participate in volunteer activities.

                     Please return to: Tracey Evers, VP of Development

                                             Fax: 236-5438

                                              THANK YOU!

For office use only:
       Received application: _____________________
      References Checked: _____________________
      *Handbook Received: ________
      Gave to: (staff member) ____________________ Department: ___________
      Volunteer Placement:_________________________ Date: _______________

                                 (If a volunteer is not placed in your dept.
                                 please give application back to Tracey.)
      * Initialed by volunteer
se give application back to Tracey.)
      * Initialed by volunteer

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