About the Lavelle Fund for the Blind
The Lavelle Fund supports programs in the Tri-State New York area and the developing world that help people who are blind and visually impaired lead independent, productive lives, together with eye care programs working to prevent and treat vision loss. We concentrate support on programs with records of achieving measurable impact on the visually impaired populations served. Programs in the Catholic tradition of serving the disadvantaged are of special interest.
Case Study Highlights
In 2014, the Fund approved a grant of $303,560 to Learning Ally, the country’s largest provider of recorded textbooks for students who are otherwise print-disabled, to create a national program designed to help blind and visually impaired students succeed in college. The College Success Program was to consist of (1) a website presenting online resources and information, and (2) a mentorship program pairing students with mentors who have been successful visually impaired college graduates.
Dr. Shroff’s Charity Eye Hospital
In 2013, the Fund approved a grant of $473,679 to Dr. Shroff’s Charity Eye Hospital (SCEH) in New Delhi, India to build sustainable capacity for training additional numbers of new vision technicians, ophthalmic nursing assistants, and patient counselors. The overall goal of the project was to produce a combined total of 150 such trainees within the grant’s three-year life. SCEH expected ultimately to hire most of the graduates of the training and to use these cost-efficient “physician-extenders” to drive a near-doubling of the hospital’s yearly volume of cataract surgeries.
VISIONS Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired
In 2013, the Fund approved a grant of $500,000 to support VISIONS, with its partner Helen Keller Services for the Blind, in launching an employer-centered and -guided job training and placement program for adults who are legally blind and live in New York City or Long Island. The program was to cultivate sustainable relationships with selected NYC and Long Island employers who hire entry-level workers.