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The New Jersey Council of the Blind
July, 2018

The New Jersey Council of the Blind’s mission is to strive for the betterment of the blind and visually impaired community. The purpose of this publication is to provide a forum for the free exchange of ideas, opinions and information that concern blind and visually impaired people.

The NJCB Chronicle is also available on Newsline. If you do not have a Newsline subscription, contact Reader Services at the New Jersey Talking Book and Braille Center at (800) 792-8322 to get signed up for a Newsline subscription. Four quarterly newsletters are sent to members free of charge by E-mail. You may obtain the current and back issues of the Chronicle and other information from our web site www.njcounciloftheblind.org. Feel free to write us at njcounciloftheblind@gmail.com.

The New Jersey Council of the Blind (NJCB) is a 501 (c) 3 corporation. Much appreciated tax-deductible donations may be sent to the Treasurer of NJCB.

The NJCB officers are: Interim President Frank Schack (973) 595-0116; Vice President, Joyce Sowa (732) 596-9675; Secretary Joyce Schack (973) 595-0116; Treasurer, Bernie Zuckerman of 32 Judson Street, Unit 7B, Edison, NJ 08837, and (732) 221-5362

President’s Message by Frank Schack

Summer is finally here, although some days it still feels like fall. We are looking forward to our quarterly picnic meeting at Camp Happiness on July 28th and hoping that you will attend.

We will be recognizing and giving out scholarships to two very deserving students.

We are very excited about our speaker who will be demonstrating the OrCam device. It is always good to see new advances in technology that will improve the lives of the visually impaired.

It is time to be thinking about electing new officers for the NJ Council of the Blind. We need new leaders with new ideas in order for the Council to prosper and grow. If you are interested in serving as an officer, please contact Jim Dougherty, the chairperson of the nominating committee at 732 549-5826.

I know that transportation is always an issue but I hope that you will make every effort to attend the next quarterly meeting. No conference call is available, therefore we need you there.

Frank Schack, Interim President

Meeting Notice

The next quarterly meeting of NJCB will be hosted by The New Jersey Blind Citizens' Association (BCA) at Camp Happiness at 18 Burlington Ave., Leonardo, NJ 07737 on Saturday, July 28, 2018. A picnic lunch will be served at 12 Noon for a cost of $5.00; the meeting will begin at 1 PM and will be over at about 4 PM. In order for them to prepare enough food call the BCA office at (732) 291-0878 by July 19th to let them know that you are coming. One person from each organization can call with a group count. We are looking forward to seeing you there.

Scholarship Committee

Here are the scholarship committee awards for the year 2018.

There are three scholarship award winners.

Rachel Azulay
Rachel is a legally blind student who attended Livingston high school.
She graduated with high honors and performed various community services.
She was on the honor roll, a member of the leadership club and raised money for sick children. Rachel will be attending Ramapo College in the fall.

Kayla Fils-Aime
Kayla is a legally blind student who attended Livingston high school.
She graduated with high honors and performed various community services. She won awards as a role model and a true leader. Kayla will be attending Kean University in the fall. Kayla would like to be an architect.

Joseph Ceetrulo
Joseph is a legally blind student who attended Lacey Township High School. He graduated with high honors and performed various community services. Joseph received the kindness award in high school. He was on the honor roll and helped with charitable foundations.
Joseph will be attending Georgian Court University in the fall.

Rachel and Kayla will attend the July meeting. Joseph will not be able to attend the July 28 meeting, but will attend the October meeting.

We congratulate all 3 of our scholarship winners on their achievements. Please join us at our July and October meetings to wish them well!

About our Guest Speaker

Eve Posner, the representative from OrCam will be demonstrating their device that converts visual information into audio. It is wearable and portable and increases independence of visually impaired individuals, no matter where they are on the vision loss spectrum.

Those in attendance will be able to try out this device.

Chapter News
News from Mercer County Association of the Blind (MCAB)

Peace and wellbeing to everyone from members of MCAB. At April’s monthly meeting our membership was blessed to have the former President and Treasurer of MCAB, Ottilie and Bob Lucas in attendance. This couldn’t have been scripted better because our membership had planned to have a memorial for our recently deceased member Lauren Casey, who was also the NJACB President. Mustafaa Shabazz opened the meeting with welcome greetings to members and guests. The Flag Salute was followed by the singing of “God Bless America. MCAB’s Chaplain and member, Gary Rhodes was then called up and offered Prayer for those present and those who were not. He then read what he said was Lauren’s favorite verse the “Lord Prayer” and then asked for a moment of silence in honor of Lauren Casey. Lauren’s close friend Ottilie Lucas was then called up who shared past moments with Lauren, her Light of kindness, compassion and intellect that she touched many with. The meeting ended enjoying Pizza and fellowship. The April 28, NJCB Quarterly meeting hosted by MCAB was enjoyed by all who attended. Although, the two guest speakers were unable to make it, President Frank Shack gave a memorial for recently deceased President Lauren Casey, read letters from ACB leadership honoring Lauren and asked for a moment of silence. The topic then turned to a discussion with our members who had difficult experiences with health facilities with many sharing these experiences. Everyone who attended enjoyed pizza, soda, cake and fellowship.

On June 2, MCAB’s membership was invited to an outdoor picnic at members Lenny and Joan Pope given by the Mercer County Veteran’s Blind Support Group. The group was founded in 2011 by New Jersey Veteran Coordinator Roger Gully, Veterans Lenny Pope and Mustafaa Shabazz. Everyone enjoyed fellowship under the tented backyard of the Pope’s with delicious food served by the local Girl Scouts.

All NJCB’s members are invited to MCAB’s Picnic on August 11, at the Elks Lodge, 42 Decou Ave. Ewing Township 08628. Time will be from 1:00 PM until 5:00 PM outside under the Gazebo. Cost $5.00. All those wishing to attend contact Mustafaa Shabazz, 609-789-8173 leave message. Last reserve date is August 3rd.

Best regards

Submitted by Mustafaa Shabazz, MCAB President

News from Blind Citizen’s Association

Welcome to summer! Even though it is raining as I write this, and I am wearing a sweater because there is a chill in the air, soon enough it will be sweltering, and we will all be complaining about the darned heat. New Jersey. Go figure. Where if you don’t like the weather, wait 15 minutes. It will change….

NJBCA held the 13th Annual Gift Auction on Friday, June 1. Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, it was one of the best years we have had! And even though it is a fundraiser, we love to hear that everyone had fun!

We had three special donors this year. First is John’s Crazy Socks. It is a company that a young man with Down Syndrome runs with his father. He was really brought into the limelight when Former President Bush wore John’s ‘book socks’ to Mrs. Bush’s funeral. Please check them out online and look into this very worthy cause.

Secondly, Two Blind Brothers. At a young age, Bradford and Bryan Manning were both diagnosed with Stargardt’s disease that causes blindness over time. This condition has inspired a special vigilance for details, a passion that carries over into the construction of their clothing line. Bradford and Bryan get down to the details. The idea for the company came from the brothers’ desire to start a side project that would expand awareness of visual impairment and allow the brothers to raise money for eye disease research. One day while they were pondering what to do, the collective light bulb went while shopping. Bryan and Bradford realized that they selected clothing based on the softness of the fabric, not the style or size or price, because they couldn’t see those things. Please check them out as well. They say they are in business to cure blindness. To date the company has donated $70,000 to eye disease research.

And the third, EONE watches. With family, friends, and loved ones who are blind, we’re familiar with a common, yet profound problem when it comes to watches: people who are blind have been forced to choose between unstylish, imprecise tactile watches, or intrusive talking watches that let everyone know when you’re checking the time. EONE was founded to solve this problem. We started with a friendship. Our founder, Hyungsoo Kim, was a graduate student at MIT when he noticed that his friend and classmate couldn’t tell time — and it wasn’t because he was blind. Too embarrassed to use his talking watch and interrupt the lecture, he’d discreetly whisper to his sighted friend Hyungsoo for the time.

Insisting that there had to be a better watch for people with vision impairments, our founder was surprised to find that there weren’t quality alternatives to what his friend was stuck with. Pressed by the conviction that everyone has a right to time, he collaborated with designers and individuals with vision impairments to create a watch that everyone can use — sighted or blind.

We tackled this issue with our signature product, the Bradley timepiece: a sleek, modern watch you can both touch and see to tell time. Our humble crowdfunding campaign surpassed our goal fifteen times over, testifying to the community of support for inclusive products. Please consider checking them out as well.

We look forward to hosting the quarterly meeting in July, and hope to see friends, old and new!


Take Route 36 to Leonardo, New Jersey in northern Monmouth County.

Turn toward the shore onto Leonard Avenue in Leonardo, NJ. Turn right onto Burlington Avenue. The meeting will be on the right starting at the picnic grounds at Camp Happiness.

Save The Date

Saturday October 27st 12 Noon to 4PM Location TBD

NOTE: Disclaimer. The views and opinions expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of the New Jersey Council of the Blind officers and/or members. The editor reserves the right to edit articles submitted for both space and content.


New Jersey Council of the Blind
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American Council of the Blind

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Treasurer- Bernie Zuckerman
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