This post comes from John G., a leading NFB-Newsline advocate. An abbreviated version of this post appeared in the July/August BVA bulletin. Personally, I use the NFB-Newsline iOS app to obtain information about my local weather and to subscribe to a couple of newspapers I read occasionally. With any more ado, here is a wonderful summary of the NFB-Newsline.
A blinded veteran will benefit by having the NFB-NEWSLINE® in the audio information tool chest for greater independence! NFB-NEWSLINE® is the world’s largest audio information service for the blind and is free and easy to use through the dial-up touch-tone telephone, iPhone application, the Internet, and portable devices for on-the-go access. Severely and newly visually impaired veterans will remain well informed regarding the top news items of the day in addition to using the service during various adjustment periods as a predisposition to becoming comfortable with more advanced access technology, such as the computer, e-mail, iPhone, Victor Reader, and more… Blinded veterans often depend upon multiple tools to accomplish one task contingent upon the environment or circumstance.
With over 400 publications (newspapers-local, national, and international, magazines, & More…), printed materials are available to a wide array of interests and needs. Emergency Weather Alerts provide valuable information for safety and, through GPS tracking, the emergency information is automatically available to the veteran using the IOS NFB-NEWSLINE Mobile App as Zip Codes change. TV Listings saves time and spares the veteran the frustration of having to seek sighted assistance for basic life matters. Retail store ads equips the shopper with a preview of products which better prepares the shopper. For the younger blinded veterans, the job search feature allows the recovering warriors to freely search for new careers in both the civilian and governmental tribes. College students can conduct global searches for research projects and discover accessible required reading materials.
Navigating the service is easy and powerful! Spell words, move line by line, negotiate articles title by title, and read continually if desired. Using the Pound 9 on the telephone keypad, an article or full publication can be immediately emailed to the veteran’s In Box for further use of the information. VA Regional Groups can post local information using the local channel. Conference agendas provide independent access easily when needed instead of seeking out sighted assistance. Blind Rehabilitation professionals have the freedom to use the service as a training tool to aid the veteran in rediscovering personal interests and maximize the effective use of equipment issued through the Veterans Administration.
Blinded veterans owe it to themselves to subscribe to the service and try it for 10 days. If the service is not enjoyed and useful, the veteran can simply quit using it. NFB-NEWSLINE® is totally FREE to ALL eligible individuals without any membership requirements…
Using NFB-NEWSLINE® is easy and similar to responding to the automated menu when calling up Walmart or the menus of a bank. The difference is you may access international news coverage to the current events from your hometown newspaper. Additional media coverage includes men’s and women’s health concerns, newest and future technology updates, family and religious interests, property development and construction areas, air and space news, and other topics through NFB-NEWSLINE® access to newspapers and magazines.
For more information, contact Scott White, Director of Sponsored Technology Programs, at (866) 504-7300.