Sights for Hope, known formerly as Center for Vision Loss, blends a service tradition inspired directly by Helen Keller in 1928 with contemporary practices to remove the barriers to independence and success caused by visual impairments. Sights for Hope empowers people with visual impairments in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley and Monroe County to thrive through skills education, specialized technologies, individualized support services, free vision screenings for children, and prevention education programs.
Sights for Hope is an independent member of the Pennsylvania Association for the Blind (PAB) and is affiliated with the VisionServe Alliance, a network of North American agencies that serve people with visual impairments.
Our Mission Statement
- To enable personal triumphs over visual impairments.
Our Vision Statement
- To influence a world in which a visual impairment is not a barrier to independence and achievement.
- Skills Education: Group and one-on-one sessions that teach vision rehabilitation, orientation and mobility, adaptive use of technology, and elemental life skills.
- Specialized Technologies: Functional low vision exams and individualized consultations performed to match clients and patients with the devices and assistive technologies that best meet their needs.
- Support Services: Services for clients – including casework support, guided transportation, peer support groups, counseling, physical activities, and recreational activities – that improve their quality of life and their access to food and medical care.
- Prevention Services: Free vision screenings for children that promote school success and education programs that advocate eye health and safety.
- We impact more than 10,000 community members in a typical year through our services for people with visual impairments, vision screenings, and prevention education programs.
- A total of 85% of our clients with visual impairments are from low-income households – defined as an income of no more than 300% of the federal poverty thresholds.
- Approximately 65% of our clients are ages 65 and up.
- More than 70% of our clients are diagnosed with Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, Diabetic Reinopathy, Cataracts, or Retinits Pigmentosa.
- A total of 94% of our children’s screenings in a typical year take place at childcare locations and schools.
- We express the Sights for Hope brand in person-first language, in which one is not a visually-impaired person but a person with, or living with, a visual impairment, low vision, or limited vision.
- We use the terms “visual impairment” or “visual impairments” instead of “blindness” in reference to our client and patient population because these terms generate the most accurate understanding of our work among the most people.
- Meanwhile, we respect that there are people who self-identify as “blind” and do not endeavor to dictate an individual’s self-identification.
Our Diversity and Inclusion Policy
Our official diversity and inclusion policy was ratified by our Board of Directors originally in Jan. 2019 and amended in Sept. 2020.
The human eye is built to see all colors in the spectrum of light – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. As the only organization dedicated to the visual well-being of everyone in Lehigh, Northampton, and Monroe counties, Sights for Hope respects the beauty and strength of humanity’s rich and colorful tapestry. Therefore, it is our policy to serve people of all physical capabilities, economic capacities, cultural backgrounds, sexual orientations, ethnicities, genders, identifications, and ages and strive to foster an environment in which everyone feels valued, understood, appreciated, cared for, and empowered. We condemn and do not tolerate racism or intolerance in any form. The manifestations of these values – including the agency’s people, services, and exhaustive efforts to provide solutions at little or no cost – reflect its guiding principle that vision loss should never be a barrier to achievement, independence, dignity, and hope for anyone.