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Services & Resources for Disabled Individuals

There are a number of excellent agencies and non-profit groups dedicated to offering a variety of services and resources to assist disabled individuals to live a full live. Many residents are familiar with some of these resources, but it’s also helpful to keep up with new programs and contact info.

Maine CITE Program

The Maine Department of Education administers the Maine CITE Program which is designed to help make assistive technology more available to Maine children, adults and seniors who need them. This program, which has been around for over 30 years, is funded by the federal Administration for Community Living.

 

Key CITE Goals Include:

  • Broaden understanding and promote wider availability of assistive and universally-designed technology.

  • Educate people with disabilities, their families, and the general public to know how to get and use assistive and universally-designed technology.

  • Facilitate the role of people with disabilities in helping to shape public policy that promotes assistive and universally-designed technology.

  • Ensure that Maine is a place where all people with disabilities have ready access to the technology they need to live full, independent and productive lives.

Maine CITE delivers services through the Maine CITE Coordinating Center (located at UMA, Augusta) as well as many private and public organizations that provide information about:

Maine CITE’s major activities include:

  • Developing partnerships and supporting organizations that provide direct assistive technology services, devices and Accessible Educational Materials (AEM).

  • Providing technical assistance to public and private organizations on accessible information technology, universally designed web site development, accessible distance learning and Accessible Educational Materials (AEM).

  • Working with financial lenders such as the Kim Wallace Adaptive Equipment Loan Programs for more affordable loans to purchase assistive technology, adapt vans and do home modifications.

 

For Information Technology, the goal is for Maine citizens to have accessibly and universally designed hardware and software that enriches lives and expands job opportunities. You’ll find RESOURCES THAT SUPPORT INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY on CITE’s website including training webinars, how to pay for assistive technology, finding used and refurbished devices, accessible digital documents, IT laws and policies, and more.

 

The Maine CITE Coordinating Center is located at the University of Maine Augusta, 46 University Drive, Augusta, ME 04330 Phone: 207-621-3195 or Maine Relay 711 E-mail: info@mainecite.org

The IRIS Network

The IRIS Network has been helping people with vision impairment or blindness in Maine since 1905!

Their mission is to help people with vision impairment or blindness attain independence and community integration.

 

Their vision is to build a world where no person is limited by vision impairment or blindness and everyone is an advocate for eye health and the needs of people with vision impairment or blindness.

 

Do you know of a transition-age, working-age, or older adult who is experiencing low vision or blindness and may be challenged by activities of daily living? Learn more about IRIS Network’s programs and services by calling (207) 774-6273.

 

IRIS Network has a Low Vision Center with staff who can recommend lighting and glare solutions for your home or place of work. You may also qualify for further training in adaptive techniques and learn about devices (writing guides, magnifiers, video magnifiers, talking pill bottles, etc.) and new technologies that will help you resume your daily activities safely and independently. The Low Vision Center also has an assortment of devices to assist with activities of daily living. While some equipment can be purchased on site, other equipment will be ordered. If you’re interested, please call (207) 774-6273 to schedule an appointment.

 

The Iris Network’s Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapists (CVRT) can come to your home to support you in remaining independent. The staff can evaluate what’s needed, based on vision loss, to allow you to continue to carry on the functions necessary to maintain the level of independence desired.  An individualized program may include one or more than one of the following components: Communications, Adaptive Kitchen Skills, Home Management, Recreation, and Personal Management.

 

Looking for a support group? In our region, there’s a Visually-Impaired Persons Group in Boothbay Harbor which has been learning and supporting many area residents for over 20 years. They meet the 1st Tuesday of each month from 1 pm to 2:30 pm at the Community Center (Meadow Mall), 185 Townsend Ave, Boothbay Harbor, ME. Contact Mollie – (207) 633-3810 or Joan – (207) 633-2498.

 

Close by, there’s a group in Augusta. The Rainbow Club meets the 2nd Monday of each month at 10 am, at the Emmanuel Lutheran Episcopal Church, 209 Eastern Ave, Augusta, ME. Contact: Donna – (207) 248-2661.

Alpha One

Alpha One empowers individuals with disabilities to take charge of choices and act on their own behalf to achieve their goals for independence. Alpha One advocates for consumer programs and services as well as access and change within society throughout the state of Maine. It is a federally-funded Center for Independent Living founded in 1978.

 

What does Alpha One do?

  • ·Promote independent living

  • ·Help people stay in their homes

  • Connect Mainers with funding sources that allow them to live independently

 

Alpha One’s Information and Referral Specialists provide information, resources, and referrals to people with disabilities, family members, other service providers, the business community, and the general public. Regular inquiries span a broad range of disability-related topics, such as In-home Care Services, Accessible Housing, Transportation, Funding Sources, Assistive Technology, and Accessibility Requirements.

 

Other major services include:

 

Independent Living Services Program, also known as the T7B Grant program, assists eligible individuals with significant disabilities to overcome substantial barriers to functioning independently. Our programs are designed to address self-care, communication, health and disability management, participation in community activities, learning difficulties, and many other independent living services.

Funds are available through the grant program to purchase services and adaptive equipment such as:

 

  • Augmentative Communication Devices

  • Telecommunication Devices for the Deaf

  • Hand Controls and Lifts for Vehicles

  • Roll-in Showers

  • Wheelchair Lifts & Ramps

  • Recreational Equipment 

  • Home Modifications

Alpha One has loan programs to help individuals with disabilities or businesses that hope to make their businesses more accessible to customers.

 

Alpha One has 2 offices in Maine – in South Portland and Presque Isle. You can contact the South Portland office by calling 800-640-7200, send an email message from the website or email info@alphaonenow.org.
 

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