Braille Institute Is Seeking Volunteers to Help Teach the Blind

The Braille Institute Orange County is seeking volunteers to teach the blind and visually impaired.

Teaching experience is not required, and only a few hours a week are necessary to participate, said Mary Johnson, volunteer services coordinator.

Participants have 140 classes to choose from, including world cultures and stress management, Johnson said.

"We have to make sure we are meeting everyone's needs," she said. "We serve from infants on up."

Daily courses in living skills help the recently blind regain their independence, teaching them how to organize their kitchens and label clothes.

Ballroom dancing, tai chi and golf are also available.

"I'm more aware, empathetic. I try to put myself in my [students'] shoes more," said Jim Chapek, 60.

The Yorba Linda retiree leads a discussion group.

The spring/summer term begins April 20 at the Braille Institute, 527 N. Dale Ave., in Anaheim.

Classes are Monday through Friday, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m and 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Information: (714) 821-5000.

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