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Careers General Colorado Center Information Youth Services

Summer Was Fun, and Especially Our Saturday Science Day!

Trevor with Maggie and Amy assembling robots

Here are a few pics from our Science Saturday way back in July! Studens rotated between three stations – basic chemistry, a station dedicated to weather, and a robotics class using Lego Mindstorms.

With the first serious fall weather this week – misty rain, leaves turning and starting to litter the lawns and sidewalks – it’s kind of fun to think about how hot it was that day out front with the bucket and the hose!

The point of course is to show our students that blind people can do science and – Wow! – it’s even fun!

Ashley working with Keila on edible candle science project
Maggie and Lauren watch as as their experiment produces gas that inflates balloons

 

Ashley simulates how a tornado looks using a bucket and water, with Roland, Faye and Keishawn. Our volunteer Kaylooks on.

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General Colorado Center Information Youth Services

Youth Programs Receive Anonymous $10,000 Donation

Garret works with 3 summer students in the Gym on holding their canes properly

Recently, we were elated to get notification that we had received an anonymous donation of $10,000 designated for our Youth Programs through our Colorado Gives portal. We often receive donations in this way and welcome every one of them. But such generous donations as this one are, not surprisingly, a little out of the norm. The anonymous donor left the following note, which meant a lot to our Youth Services staff as our summer youth programs were drawing to a close. We’ve edited the note slightly:

I am pleased to be able to make another large donation this year. (I know) one of your alumni and seeing the incredible impact you have made in her life makes me want to give as much as I can. God bless you all. True charity is anonymous, I do not need any recognition of accolades beyond being able to continue to see you do incredible work.

Maggie and Lauren experiment with chemically inflating balloonsSo let’s talk about Summer 2017. We’re including a few photographic highlights from this year. Along with these activities, many students had their first jobs this summer. Maggie, for example, is starting her sophomore year of high school in Arizona. She was matched with our perennial partner, “Arapahoe community College (ACC) to work in their e-learning Department. Her job was to check various pages on ACC’s web pages and learning management system for accessibility. ACC has a strong commitment to equal access to learning, and Maggie loved her job using her assistive technology skills.

“And they loved me, too!” she reported.

No doubt.

Dineigha is also a high school sophomore this year and loved her job doing childcare at the Auraria Early Learning Center – another perennial partner for our Earn and Learn summer students. Going to a job, having responsibility, doing something valuable and then getting paid for it is an important step in becoming an adult for any young person. but it is one in which blind youth face barriers of doubt on the part of prospective employers and often doubt about their own abilities to meet the challenge. Our Earn and Learn program makes that step as normal and as rewarding as those our students’ peers experience. And they come away with the confidence that they can be successful in the work force.

Mausam is a high school senior this year in Virginia and was part of the College Prep Program this summer.

“Growing up with Indian parents,” she said with understated humor at the summer graduation ceremony, “college is the Holy Grail.”

Mausam learned about the differences between high school and college. Blind students in college have to plan, investigate and initiate accommodations well in advance to ensure they will have equal access. In addition to learning more about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), she and her felow College Prep students had the opportunity to visit two area campuses and learn about how accessibility services are administered at each, giving her more experience and perspective, and thus a better chance to make the successful transition into higher education next fall.

The only suitable expression of our gratitude for this generous donation is to continue to give the message through our unique training programs that blind Youth, seniors and our Independence Training Program students can live the lives they want. World-class blindness skills and confidence-building challenges are the recipe, and we’ll keep developing new ways to give our students the tools to change what blindness means in their lives!

To learn more about giving to the innovative programs of the Colorado Center for the Blind, visit our Donate page.

Roland locates a hand hold as he climbs up a steep rock outcrop
Four rafts navigate down Clear Creek toward some white water near some large rocks
Summer students Mary and Cheyenne each mount a tandem bike with EyeCycle Volunteers while Christina waits her turn

 

Roland picks Basil leaves while he takes a tour of the garden
A large group of CCB Summer Youth on Paddle Boards, Kayaks and Canoes
Masson learns how to put power in forward knee strikes while Rachael holds the pad. Maggie waits her turn to give it a try

 

Summer staff with canes crossed in the air

Categories
Youth Services

Weather, Robots and Chemistry: Summer Science Seminar is Saturday!

Jamie (bottom right) holding the rocket with a group of CCB youth launching water rockets
Water Rockets were a big splash during last summers science seminar.

Blind people can and are scientists, even though too often blind youth are discouraged or set off to the side in science classes. With that in mind, each year we conduct a Saturday Science Seminar in conjunction with our summer programs. It’s not exclusive, however, as blind youth are invited whether or not they’re in this year’s summer programs.

So please join us for 3 fun filled and educational sessions in an array of sciences.

When and Where?

Saturday July 22nd from 9:30 am – 3:30 pm. We will be providing lunch so please RSVP to Brent by July 20th. Email him at [email protected] or by phone 303-778-1130 x 222.

What?

We’ll break participants up into three groups, and each group will get a chance to go to all three of the science activities offered:

Robotics

Learn about mechanical advantage and gear ratios and more when your group assembles a Lego Mindstorm robot to drive across the floor.
Trevor Settles, B.S. Physics

Meteorology

Experience cloud formation, the Bernoulli Effect and other weather phenomena related to the weather.
Ashley Neybert, B.S. in Chemistry

Chemistry

Use the talking LabQuest during an Introduction to basic chemistry and using accessible technology to take visual measurements using non-visual methods.
Dr. April Hill Associate Professor, Director of Criminalistics
Department of Chemistry
Metropolitan State University of Denver

Come and have some science fun!

Categories
General Colorado Center Information Youth Services

Summer Youth Explore the Garden

Group of Summer Youth in the garden with bags of produce

Today we start up again after our annual trip to the National Fedeeration of the Blind Convention in Orlando, but the CCB summer students got back in the swing of things yesterday. Since it was our appointed gardening day with the Master Gardeners, summer students and staff got the privilege of bringing in the first zucchini of the season, as well as some other tasy surprises!

Categories
Events Independence Training Program Youth Services

Fitness & Sports Tomorrow for #NFChallenge #OlympicDay2017! @WEFitwellness @USABA

It’s happening here tomorrow starting at 10 a.m. Thanks to our partners at WE Fit Wellness and United States Association of Blind Athletes (USABA). Contributing will be Eye-Cycle, Achilles Denver and members of the Colorad Storm Beep Baseball team.

And at lunch there wil be a keynote address from current CCB studentChaz Davis, a member of the 2016 US Paralympic team! Checkout the agenda below.

#NFChallenge Olympic Day Agenda

10:00-10:10 – Welcome
Meeting Room

10:10-10:55 – Breakout Session 1

Running – lobby sitting area

Tandem Cycling – picnic tables

Beep baseball – side yard

Power Lifting – art room

Goalball – gym

11:10-11:55 Breakout Session 2

Judo – Travel Lobby

Tandem Cycling – picnic tables

Beep baseball – side yard

Power Lifting – art room

Goalball – gym

11:55-1:00 Lunch
Meeting Room
Keynote Address Chaz Davis, 2016 Paralympian

1:15- 2:00 Breakout Session 3

Running – lobby sitting area

Judo – Travel Lobby

Tandem Cycling – picnic tables

Power Lifting – art room

Goalball Scrimmage Matches: gym

Categories
General Colorado Center Information Youth Services

They’re coming today, the #CCBSummer17 students! 2016tells what’s ins store:

Summer staff with canes crossed in the air

That’s right, Summer 2017 students are all arriving today by planes, … well automobiles at least. Their counselors have been here for nearly two weeks, getting classrooms and apartments ready, creating lesson plans and getting in touch with the students – even finding out what them might like for dinner tonight! It’s the start of eight dynamic weeksof challenge and growth because, as we always say, this isn’t a camp, it’s a PROGRAM!

Last summer, after eight weeks, after the final meal cooked by the summer students for family and the etire Center, after the talent show and passing out of certificates, and as the packing and apartment cleaning started, Summer 2016 students and staff took a few moments to reflect on what the summer meant to them.

Categories
General Colorado Center Information Youth Services

Dates & Applications for 2017 Residential Summer Youth Programs Available

Smiling young man prepares to board the RTD bus
Thomas boards a bus druing travel class last summer.

Sure, it was an unlucky 13 degrees this morning and one-third of our ITP students are on the slopes today, so why not start thinking about Summer 2017?

Here are the dates of all three residential programs.

Summer for Success College Prep Program
Ages: completed junior year in high school with focus on college
Program dates: June 9 – August 4
8-week residential program

Earn and Learn High School Program
Ages: 14 years or older and completed freshman year of high school
Program dates: June 9 – August 4
8-week residential program

Initiation to Independence Middle School Program
Ages: 11-14
Program dates: June 12 – June 30
3 week residential program

At the Colorado Center for the Blind we offer three summer residential programs for students in middle school, high school and college prep. The students live with counselors in 2 bedroom, 1½ bath apartments located near the Center and will work on all aspects of managing an apartment. Students are well supervised by their counselors at a ratio of 3 to 1. They will also use public transportation to travel to and from the Center each day. There are usually 2-3 students per apartment and they work together on such things as cleaning, cooking, food storage, grocery shopping, using shopper assistants, budgeting money, and sharing common household chores.

We place a big emphasis on challenge recreation activities such as white water rafting, rock climbing, canoeing, martial arts, science and a variety of other events. The students always have a great time tackling these challenges that are generally perceived as inaccessible to blind kids.

All students participate in discussion groups where they talk about what it’s like to be a blind teenager. Topics of discussion may include dating, dealing with parents and teachers, ways to integrate effectively into all school activities, and various social situations. Students learn how to problem solve, self-advocate and take charge of their lives.

All programs share the core classes of Braille, cane travel, daily living skills, technology and philosophy of blindness. As an integral part of our programs, students with residual vision are required to wear sleep shades during the day and during other Center activities. This provides for all students to focus their attention on learning the non-visual techniques that we teach at the Colorado Center for the Blind. Self-confidence and belief in one’s capacity takes root most firmly when the student realizes that their sel-fworth need not be based upon how much vision they have, but instead on their effectiveness using either nonvisual or visual techniques.

One of the high points of the high school and college prep summer programs is traveling to the National Federation of the Blind Annual Convention. This is the largest gathering of blind people in the world and the students get the chance to meet many successful blind adults and other kids from all around the country. At the convention, they learn about the newest in assistive technology and other adaptive devices, while experiencing some of the details of staying in a world-class hotel. Students will have an the opportunity to pack for the trip, check luggage and travel through the airport with other blind people using new travel skills. On the last night of the convention, they will attend a formal banquet and will be expected to dress appropriately.

Summer for Success College Prep Program
The College Prep class seeks to instill a sense in each student that they can and should take charge of their education in college and beyond. The program introduces students to the student-initiated world of the college Disability Services office and “reasonable accommodations”, as well as the increasingly virtual learning environment. We impart concepts and develop skills to assist the student in finding success in their studies. They will learn about their civil rights in college, as well as multi-tool strategies for obtaining their own accessible formats of textbooks and other instructional materials. Here, the emphasis will be on assistive technologies and textbook resources. We’ll also cover access to science and math, research databases and use travel skills to visit several campuses in the Denver Metro area.

Earn and Learn High School Program
This eight-week residential program serves students aged 14 and older. Not only do these students take the core classes, but they have the opportunity to participate in exciting, paid work experiences. We work to match students with jobs they find both interesting and challenging, and they travel to and from their jobs with an assigned Summer Counselor. It is exhilarating for the students to get their first paycheck.

Initiation to Independence Middle School Program
This is a three-week residential program for students aged 11-14. In addition to the core classes, this is an opportunity for this age group to live in apartments with other students and a counselor, getting real world experiences in their home away from home. Students will meet successful, working adults in order to learn about various professions. These students are excited to have so many new experiences in just three short weeks!

PDF Icon
Download the Summer Youth Program Application as a PDF file
Word Doc Icon
Download the Summer Youth Program Application as a Word Document

For more information please contact:
Brent Batron, Director of Youth Programs
[email protected]

Categories
Youth Services

Announcing Dates for the 2017 CONFIDENCE CAMP FOR KIDS

Come join us for our Elementary Summer day Program!

June 5 through June 23
 

9:00 am to 3:00 pm Monday through Friday
 

For ages 5-11
Once again, The Colorado Center for the Blind is sponsoring our interactive, three week program for blind and visually impaired children ages five through eleven.

The highly qualified staff, including two certified TVIs, will work with students in a variety of age appropriate areas such as cane skills, daily living skills, Braille and beginning technology. Students will prepare lunch each day and focus on household activities like making beds, vacuuming, washing dishes, sweeping, etc.

Several experienced and energetic blind role models will be paired with students as we believe that positive blind role modeling teaches success.

Not only will the students work on building their skills but, even more importantly, they will gain confidence in themselves by participating in a wide range of activities. Some of these activities will include a science fair, riding the light rail to parks and recreation centers, swimming, eating lunch at a restaurant and many more.

Students cap off this experience by participating in a unique and fun performance that friends and families can attend. The skills and confidence they gain from this experience will be exciting.

The fee of $100 covers all 3 weeks and all activities. We are grateful to our many grantors and donors who make Confidence Camp possible each year.

All students will use a long white cane during the program, and will also have a number of opportunities to test their skills using sleep shades.

Call early to reserve a spot or email/ fax your application soon. Applications will be reviewed in the order they are received.

PDF Icon
Download the Confidence Camp Application as a PDF file
Word Doc Icon
Download the Confidence Camp Application as a Word Document

For more information contact:
Brent Batron, Director of Youth Programs,
303-778-1130 ext 222,
[email protected]