Thank you for your interest in joining the National Federation of the Blind Dream Builders Capital Campaign. As you know, we have several important projects on the horizon. We want to share details of this project with you personally.
Blind job seekers.
What’s at Stake
The unemployment rate for blind people is estimated to be 70 percent, meaning most blind people are unemployed or underemployed. A major contributor to this problem is the lack of access to job search strategies, placement professionals, and other supports that lead to gainful employment.
How the Virtual Career Club Will Help
- Through the Virtual Career Club, the National Federation of the Blind will offer greater access to job search strategies, placement professionals, and other supports that lead to employment.
- The Virtual Career Club will teach blind job seekers how to use accessible job search strategies and tools, while trained professionals and successful blind adults will serve as instructors and mentors.
Building the Program
- Online Component: Utilizing available online platforms and infrastructure, we will create a platform that allows individuals and groups to participate from a variety of locations.
- Instructors and Mentors: We will enlist the help of job placement professionals and successfully employed blind people to teach and support Virtual Career Club members as they work to establish their own careers.
- Clearinghouse: The program will serve as a clearinghouse for best practices related to job search, thus increasing the likelihood that blind people working to enter the job market will be successful.
- Face-to-Face Component: The Virtual Career Club will be tied in with our career track at our national convention to provide a face-to-face experience. Participants will also take advantage of our seminars and our career fair at the convention.
Evaluating the Program
The National Federation of the Blind will:
- Track the number of presentations and number of participants.
- Document the web resources created.
- Track the employment progress of participants, term of participation, volume of participation, employment outcomes, employment retention, employment advancement, etc.
Resources and Personnel Needed
- Program Manager (likely the director of the CEO)
- Part-Time Web Support
Why the National Federation of the Blind
Our philosophy on blindness and our belief in the capacity of blind people create opportunities that otherwise would not exist. Our members work in a wide variety of jobs, and our network of successful blind adults will serve as a support to young people who need to gain the tools necessary to become employed on a permanent basis. In addition, societal low expectations prevent many blind job seekers from pursuing their dreams, while societal fascination with the abilities of blind people gives some blind job seekers an inflated perception of their skill set. The National Federation of the Blind has the unique ability to offer blind job seekers the reality check necessary for them to counter both of these misconceptions and to acquire the actual skills they need to become employed.