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January 2012 Bulletin

by NFBCal

To be read at all chapter meetings:

I hope all of you have had a very happy new year and made lots of resolutions which you have no intention of keeping.  I am.

“Everything you’ve done in life- the good, the bad- have all brought you to this moment.  Someone out there obviously wants you to do something significant, right now.  That person is you.”  Chris Lee

San Francisco Chapter Receives Certificate of Honor –

We are so proud of the accomplishments of the San Francisco Chapter over the past month.  The following is the text from the document issued and signed by Mayor,

Ed. Lee.  The original framed certificate hangs in the home of the San Francisco Chapter President, Eric Holm.

“Whereas, on behalf of the City and County of San Francisco, I am pleased to recognize  and honor the National Federation of the Blind, San Francisco Chapter.  The hard work and dedication of this organization continues to raise awareness towards combating common misunderstanding and the lack of information about our blind community.  As the largest collective action, national organization of consumer blind persons in the nation with well over 50,000 members, the National Federation of the Blind has diligently worked to provide programs for the increasing number of people who losetheir vision each year.  I commend Eric Holm, President of the San Francisco Chapter and all those whose tireless efforts will continue to benefit many for generations to come.  Best Wishes for your Holiday Party Fundraiser and all your future endeavors.

Therefore I have herewith set my hand and caused the Seal of the City and County of San Francisco to be affixed.  Edward M Lee, Mayor”

On a personal note, the Holiday Party was a blast.  The auction was a success.  I now own a beautiful large picture of the Golden Gate Bridge.

Chemistry Camp is Coming-

Again this year, the National Federation of the Blind of California and the California Association of Blind Students will host a weekend of fun and learning at the Enchanted Hills Camp in Napa, California.

Chemistry has been considered one of those subjects in school which blind students should not participate actively in with their peers.  Hoby Wedler, founder and coordinator of Chemistry Camp is determined to teach blind students that chemistry is not only accessible but, it is actually fun to do.

On May 4, 5 and 6, 2012, fifteen junior high school and high school students will learn adaptive techniques for titrating chemicals, mixing esters and other activities which will increase their self-confidence and self-advocacy when taking Science classes.

Applications will be made available on our website, by the end of the month.  Keep watching for announcements and spread the word to Teachers of the Visually Impaired and Rehabilitation Counselors to make recommendations for participants.  The application deadline is March 20, 2012.

Leadership in Advocacy Program in Washington D.C.-

Twenty four Blind students, ages twelve to sixteen or grades six to nine, will be accepted for the National Federation of the Blind LAW 2012 Program.  The students will have a unique opportunity to explore the inner workings of our country’s government, its history and its culture.  In addition they will learn about the history of the organized blindness civil rights movement, how resolutions are passed and how blindness legislation is created, participants will become familiar with advocacy work for blind individuals and available resources for blind students and adults.  All accepted students must be accompanied by a parent/guardian, teacher, or blind/low-vision mentor from their home state.  Interested students should apply by going to  The deadline is February 1, 2012.

NASA is looking for Students with Disabilities for Summer Internships-

Summer internships run for ten weeks from early June through early/mid August.  If you know any blind students interested in Science, Technology, Engineering or Math careers, and will be at least a university freshman in the fall with a minimum GPA of 2.8, encourage them to go to the website, for more information or call Ken Silberman at (301) 286-9281.    

2012 NFB Writing Contest-

The Writers Division annual youth and adult writing contest is open for submissions from January 1 to April 1, 2012.  Students up to eighteen years old are judged on creativity, writing on topics such as poetry and fiction, and quality of Braille.  Adults (eighteen and older) can submit work that includes poetry, fiction, non-fiction and stories for youth.  Guidelines are available at

California Youth Coordinator Needed-

We are looking for a young, energetic leader who has an interest in working with NFB youth programs.  The Youth Coordinator will become knowledgeable about NFB youth oriented programs and be willing to help spread the word and make recommendations for participants.  Interested persons should contact President Mary Willows at (510) 818-1641.

At Large Chapter Meetings-

The California affiliate has found it beneficial to develop an At Large Chapter for people who are living in areas of California which are not easily accessible to regular monthly chapter meetings.  The At Large Chapter meets by conference call on the second Thursday of each month at 7:00 P.M.  Every month we meet new blind people who need our help and support.  Join us at the next At Large Chapter meeting which will be held on Thursday, January 12, 2012. at (712) 432-0175 pass code 184220.

Mary Willows, President
39481 Gallaudet Drive Apt. 127
Fremont, CA 94538
(510) 248-0100

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