Who We Are
The Lighthouse of the Big Bend is a nonprofit agency dedicated to guiding people through vision loss. Our mission is to assist people with vision loss in their pursuit of independence. Free services are provided on an outreach (one on one) or group basis and are provided without charge, without regard to individual or family income level, race, creed, age, disability or national origin.
Who We Serve
Any child age 0-5 or individual aged 14 to 114+ who is legally blind and lives in the following counties is eligible for free services. Counties served include: Franklin, Gadsden, Hamilton, Jefferson, Lafayette, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Suwannee, Taylor, and Wakulla.
What We Do
For individuals who are losing their vision or are already visually impaired or blind to enroll in Lighthouse Services, just complete an intake referral form at the link. Anyone can also get assistance with filling out a referral over the phone with a Lighthouse staff member. Clients are then assigned a Lighthouse Specialist from whom they will receive services. The Specialists help each client plan and implement a training program that will insure they receive the best services possible.
Services may include individual instruction or classes in any of the following:
- Techniques of daily living (home and personal management),
- Communication (reading, writing, phone),
- Assistive technology including computers,
- Orientation and mobility (moving safely around the home and community),
- Employment skills,
- Recreation and leisure activities,
- Self advocacy,
- Individual and family adjustment counseling,
and other information and skills as requested by individuals and families.
For more details on what we do, please visit the Services page or contact us.
How to Contact Us
For free services, please call (850) 942-3658 or toll-free at 1 (888) 827-6033.
You can also email the Lighthouse at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Need help? If you want to make a referral for someone (or yourself) to receive free services?
Email or fax (850-942-4518) a REFERRAL FORM, and we will get back to you within 3 business days!
How to Help
* Each year, the Lighthouse holds our signature event, the Paula Bailey DINING IN THE DARK benefit. This year the event is scheduled for Sunday, October 26, 2014, 5:00-8:30pm at the University Center Club.
A huge thank you to everyone who supported the Lighthouse and had the amazing experience of Dining in the Dark last year with the Leon County Sheriff's Office SWAT Team. You helped us raise over $33,000! For tickets to the annual event, please check out our Dining in the Dark Sponsor & Ticket Form.
* Check out the Lighthouse Volunteer page for opportunities to assist the Lighthouse with your time and energy.
* Donations: We could not provide the services and training supplies we do without our generous donors! If you are interested in donating to the Lighthouse, please go to the Network for Good page to donate by major credit card or PayPal. If you intend your donation to be for Dining in the Dark tickets make sure under “designation” you type Dining in the Dark 2014 and we will reserve your ticket or table for the upcoming event and send you tickets. A huge thank you to all our donors who help make Lighthouse services possible!
* Consider getting our specialty license plate "A State of Vision" benefiting the agency serving the blind in the county where your car is registered. So - if you buy the $25 tag in one of the Lighthouse's eleven counties, the money will come right back to Lighthouseof the Big Bend to help your neighbors, friends and family who may have lost their vision. Below is an image of the tag. You can buy a specialty tag gift certificate, as well, which might be a wonderful gift for the holidays. Much thanks to Representative Loranne Ausley who bought the first tag 2/7/07 and to all those who have already bought the tag!
Visit your local tag agency to find out how to get "A State of Vision" plate.
The Lighthouse of the Big Bend (formerly FIRE) is supported through contracts with the Florida Department of Education, Division of Blind Services, as well as grants through the United Way, Leon County, The Able Trust, Capital Medical Society Foundation, and numerous corporate and private donations. ~ Thank you!