Blind news Victoria, Fall 2017

Editor’s Note: What follows is volume 6 of Blind News Victoria. For convenience, headings have been added to this archived version. The timestamp on this archived copy reflects the time the original word document was last edited and does not reflect the time at which the newsletter went out via email.

Blind News Victoria

A publication of the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind

Fall 2017

After two months of sun and relaxation, its back to school for the Pacific Training Centre students. Classes will commence the week of Monday September 11, with classes on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. . All returning students will be contacted prior to their first class. We are looking forward to an exciting year and will be expanding our program to serve students from outside the Victoria area. We also hope to take on one more staff person to help us meet the growing demand for blindness skills training.

Please consider becoming a member of the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind Society. Membership is only $5 per year. The greater the membership, the more successful the Society will be in acquiring grants from the government which are essential to us carrying on the vital work of the PTCB.

To join call Elizabeth at 250-580-4910 or email

Mark Your Calendar

PTCB Annual General Meeting

Tuesday September 19 at 4:00

Disability Resource Centre Board Room – 817a Fort St.

The meeting is open to all PTCB current and perspective members and there will be a phone in option for those who cannot attend in person. The meeting will be followed by pizza and refreshments. Please RSVP if you plan to attend in person or need the conference call details.

RSVP 250-580-4910 or

Getting Together with Technology (GTT)

Date: September 6, 2017

Time: 1:00 PM to 3:30 PM

Where: Community Room, GVPL, Main Branch 735 Broughton St

First Hour: Presentation from Heidi Likenby, Heidi works with the Public Service Agency in BC Government Digital Experience.  She is currently working on a project to bring disability awareness and accessibility to the IT forefront throughout government.  She is an accessibility advocate and is very interested in finding out more about GTT and also having the chance to meet some of the members, see first hand how they use assistive technology and hear their points of view on web design and accessibility.

2nd Hour: Steve Barclay, Canadian Assistive Technologies will provide a demonstration of what’s new in low vision and blindness tech, and offer a hands-on opportunity to those in attendance.

Contact Albert Ruel for more information or to receive future notices.

Phone: 250-240-2343,


VocalEye at the Belfry Theatre this fall

  1. The Children’s Republic

Sunday October 1 at 2 p.m.

  1. Onegin

Sunday, October 29 at 2 p.m.

Belfry Theatre, 1291 Gladstone Ave., Victoria

This year, the Belfry is offering an annual subscription to VocalEye patrons. This subscription includes tickets to the VocalEye performances for each of their four main productions. A subscription costs $98.68 including tax ($24.67 per show). Single tickets are also available for $30.98 including tax. There is no special rate for companions this year.

To purchase a single ticket or annual subscription call the Belfry box office:


VIP Singers first practice

Monday September 18, 10 – 12

The VIP Singers is a group of blind and sighted singers and musicians who meet once a week to learn the words and harmonies (by ear) for original arrangements of popular songs and old time favourites.  Anyone who likes to sing is welcome.  The VIP Singers perform gigs at seniors’ homes and hospitals.  Practices are on Mondays from 10 – 12 at the James Bay New Horizons, 234 Menzies St.

New members are always welcome. No previous choir experience is required. If you like to sing, please join us. For more information call Marcelina 250-516- 0584.

Victoria Community Report on AMI Audio

September 21 6:00 a.m. (repeated at 8 a.m.)

Linda Bartram has been contracted by AMI Audio as a Community Reporter for Victoria and Vancouver Island. Her interview can be heard on Live from Studio Five every fourth Thursday morning at 6:00 a.m. (repeated at 8 a.m.). She will be featuring cultural events and activities of interest to persons who are blind. AMI Audio can be found at 889 on your television or on line at

About the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind

The Pacific Training Centre for the Blind (PTCB) is a Canadian grassroots nonprofit charitable service organization founded and run by blind people.  Its training fosters independence, where blind people empower blind people to be employed, independent and free.

The Blind People in Charge Program, provided by the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind, is the only program of its kind in Western Canada that offers regular, intensive rehabilitation to people who are blind or who are losing their vision; it is also the only program that uses an empowering, problem-solving model of instruction, where blind people are the teachers, planners, directors and administrators.

The program involves a collaborative, positive, and empowering approach to blindness, where blind people learn from and teach each other in a supportive, can-do atmosphere. Instructors and mentors teach the skills of independence such as Braille, adaptive technology, cane travel, cooking and other life skills, and develop strategies for coping with blindness and vision loss in a sighted world.

The Blind People in Charge Program held at the Victoria Disability Resource Centre 817a Fort St., runs two days a week from 10:00 – 4:00 and participants are encouraged to attend as full time students (12 hours a week).  Drop in students are also considered.  Teaching takes place in group and one-on-one sessions and participants progress at their own pace.  Past participants have ranged in age from 24 – 88.  Anyone over 18 who is blind or is experiencing significant vision loss may apply including those who are experiencing other challenges.  There is no charge to students; however donations are always welcome.  For more information, or to participate in our program, please contact us.

Phone: 250-580-4910