January 2015

Panhandle Gardening

Editor’s Note: The following piece comes from Community Service Division president Darian Smith of California. He not only discusses his experience participating in a recent gardening project and his feelings about community service, but he also provides valuable insight into some alternative techniques that blind people can use to participate in a similar project in their own community.

In the DreamPower Barn

Editor’s Note: Mary Church serves as secretary/treasurer of the newly-formed National Federation of the Blind of California Community Service Division. In the following piece, Mary writes about her volunteer work with a therapeutic horse ranch and why it is important to her to give back to her community.

2014: A Look Back and the Journey Forward

Fellow Federationists,

As I look back on 2014, I look back on a year filled with excitement, anticipation, hard work, and firsts. The year started with the decision that the time was right to make the Community Service Group the Community Service Division. Much of the thought and planning had been set in motion before the beginning of the year, but after consulting with Dr. Maurer, who was President of the National Federation of the Blind at the time, we knew that it was finally time to see our plans through. It took the collective efforts of Chris Parsons, Kaiti Shelton, Corina Salinas, Michele Mitchell, and many more supportive members outside our leadership group to start planning the activities at our National Convention that would culminate in the organizing meeting of the division. But before we can talk about what happened at the 74th convention of the National Federation of the Blind, we should talk about how we got there.