This Week at CSC

Keeping you “In the Know…” 1/24/20

Click here for a weekly archive of what's happening at CSC.

Call Center Update:

-The upstairs Call Center renovation is nearing completion! The team is beginning to move back into the space, which includes new work stations, carpeting, lobby furniture, LED display monitor for daily statistics, wall logos and more. Thanks to CSC’s Facilities team, IT team, Jassen Tawil, David Magyar and Call Center staff for their hard work, patience and cooperation during the two-week project. Thanks to the project management team and vendors for their quality and efficient installation, workmanship and cooperation on this great enhancement to CSC.

Educating the Community:

-CSC Board Chair Howard Lichtig hosted members of The Rotary Club of Cleveland for a tour and overview of the agency on Thursday evening. The group met with Alicia Howerton to learn about CSC through a question and answer session.

-Bright Futures Preschool hosted a visiting education team from Ukraine on Tuesday, January 21st. Teachers and several translators who are education specialists focusing on disability rights best practices were able to tour the agency and learn about how services are provided to CSC clients. They were especially interested in CSC’s integrated preschool model. Dorota Tomaszewska and Sylvia Snyder answered lots of questions from the group, who is being hosted by the Cleveland Council on World Affairs through the U.S. Department of State on the topic “Inclusive Education.”

-Dorota Tomaszewska visited Albion Elementary in North Royalton on Friday, January 17th and spoke to the 2nd grade class about alternative ways to communicate including Braille and sign language. They enjoyed several fun activities during the afternoon visit as well.

-Tom Sawyer visited the Rocky River Senior Center this week and gave a presentation on Vision Health. The Outreach team presented their “Tips Talk” at the Broadview Heights Senior Center and Gates Mills Villa in Mayfield to close out the week.

What’s Happening at CSC:

-Adult Winter Weekend will take place from Friday, February 7th at 5:00 p.m. through Sunday, February 9th at 12:00 p.m. at Highbrook Lodge. The cost for this snowy weekend getaway session is $75 without transportation, $90 with. CSC staff members are encouraged to spread the word about this session to their adult clients. CSC staff members living with vision loss or blindness are also invited to attend as participants. If you are interested in volunteering for the weekend (or for just a few hours), please contact Jenny Schaeffer (x4596). Spots are limited and will fill up quickly – so please start sharing news about this opportunity!

-Rehabilitation Services is hosting a one-day rehab training program on Thursday, January 30th at CSC. As part of this in-service training, the team will be reviewing new equipment in the Assistive Technology Lab and Eyedea Shop, receive training on the Android device and as well as a presentation on CVI/Stroke. There will be two afternoon sessions open to all CSC staff (with supervisor permission) including a session on Community Resources by Jim Hlavaty from 2:45 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. and a session on Community Transportation by Scott Williams-Riseng from 3:15 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. The open sessions will be held in the Clyde E. Williams, Jr. Auditorium A. For more information, contact Susie Meles (x8747).

-Rehabilitation Services is excited to announce three new recreation programs beginning in 2020:
Cooking Class: Friday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. | 6 week course, beginning Jan. 24 - This class is already full!
Ballroom Dance: Thursday, 12 p.m.-2 p.m. | 3 week course, beginning Feb. 6th
Walking Club: Date and time TBA

Registration is required for these activities. Contact Vince Williams (x4597), Recreation Specialist and Assistant Camp Manager, to register.

-Don't forget to schedule your yearly eye exam! While low vision exams are a vital part of the Low Vision Clinic, they also offer routine exams for all types of vision. You do not have to experience low vision to schedule a routine exam. The Low Vision Clinic also offers an optician on-site to get eyeglass prescriptions filled. Read more in CSC’s January blog post here.

Employment Services Success Story:

*Names and businesses have been changed for confidentiality

-Ms. Patty Smith began her new job as a Certified Customer Service Specialist at a Cleveland-area company on October 28th, 2019 and she just “bubbles” with enthusiasm when talking about it. Like many individuals with disabilities and who have been out of work for long periods, finding employment was a long and arduous process.

After graduating with a liberal arts degree, Patty began searching for work in May 2015. She became very frustrated with the job search process but ultimately became connected to Cleveland Sight Center's Employment Services department, working with Employment Specialist Judith Post (Judy) in April 2018. Judy assisted Patty with interviewing skills, updating her resume and staying ready to sell herself to employers. It still took some time, but Judy never gave up on Patty and encouraged her to not give up on herself. "There were many days I just wanted to give up and quit altogether, but, of course, I heard Judy’s ever so small voice in my ear saying, “No! You can’t just give up,” recalls Patty.

Patty stayed the course and while at an office visit at a company with her daughter, she struck up a conversation with a lady at the office and shared her struggles with finding employment after surgeries and many years of unemployment. The woman, Ms. Nancy Jones, asked if Patty had a resume. As it turned out, Nancy was the company's hiring manager, and because Patty always carried her flash drive, she was ready.

Today, Patty is happily employed and says she loves it! In her role, she is responsible for answering and transferring all incoming calls, monthly reports, filing, No Show/No Call appointments and maintaining daily attendance which is forwarded to the company’s main office. She says she has learned so much in such a short period. She boasts about the company's family-oriented atmosphere and claims she feels as if she is a part of a family. Patty especially enjoys working with people from various walks of life, as she says it makes her feel a part of something bigger than herself. She welcomes each working day because she feels she is helping someone change their life for the better or at least making someone's day better. “If it had not been for Judy, I wouldn’t be in this position today. She has been my lifeline,” said Patty.

Eyedea Shop’s Featured Product This Week: Eyeglass Accessories

-Happy New Year from the Eyedea Shop! Do you wear any kind of glasses, reading, prescription or even sunglasses? If so, the store has a few low cost items that may be helpful. Have you lost a screw in your glasses? An eyeglass repair kit will take care of it…the kit includes screws and even the tiny screwdriver and some extra nose pads. The store also offers a variety of eyeglass cords to keep your glasses snug to your head while playing sports or just to be secure on your head while doing other activities. Another option is a cord that will allow you to hang your glasses on you when not wearing them. Perhaps you won't misplace those glasses as much. The eyeglass chains for the ladies are quite pretty, beaded and colorful and look like jewelry. Unique eyeglass charms that hang from your glasses are available but in very limited quantity. Prices range from $ $7.00…stop in and check out what’s new!

Items of Note:

-Friend of CSC Gabriella Drago knew she wanted to be a music therapist in the 10th grade. After finishing her degree at Baldwin Wallace University, Gabriella became a board-certified music therapist.

With support from Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD), Cleveland Sight Center, professors and others, Gabriella explained how meaningful the encouragement has been. “Sometimes people don’t talk about it, but having a disability can take a toll on your mental health,” she said. “You can’t do it all alone. Having a support system makes it so much easier.”

Tune into episode 10 of OOD Works - the Podcast to learn more about Gabriella’s recent transition from college graduate to professional in her chosen field. Find the episode now wherever you listen to podcasts by searching "OOD Works." Transcripts and MP3 files are available at

-Please note beginning Monday, February 3rd the Eyedea Shop’s new store hours will be 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

-Did you know the Statue of Liberty has a condition called Morton’s toe? Morton’s toe is a physical anomaly in which the second toe is longer than the first – or “big” – toe.