Special Needs

Find support for parents of children with special needs. Learn how to advocate for your child, raise funds for needed equipment and find helpful organizations.

Filter by: Advocacy, Assistive Technology, Autism, Schools for the Blind, Support, Visual Impairment

Roberto family

Adoption and Foster Care, Visual Impairment

Adopting a Visually Impaired Child from China: Our Story

MaryAnne Roberto shares her story of adopting two boys who are blind through Bethel China. Shane and Vincent have different stories, but they are all part of one big family!

standalone bed with sides and top

Sleep, Special Needs

Creative Care Safe Spaces: Beds and Sensory Spaces for Special Needs Kids

This company based in the UK makes solidly constructed spaces and beds to keep special needs children safe in their rooms.

collage of eyes

iPad Apps and Accessibility, Visual Impairment

Be My Eyes App: Lend Your Eyes to the Blind

This iPhone app allows visually impaired users to connect with sighted users in real time in order to receive assistance with simple tasks.

Advocacy, Visual Impairment

Awareness T-Shirts for Kids who are Blind or Visually Impaired

Check out these childhood blindness Awareness T-Shirts from Eye Power Kid's Wear! Express yourself and raise awareness for your cause!

Tools for Life logo blue letters on white background

Assistive Technology, Special Needs

Dollars & Sense: Navigating the AT funding stream

This search engine helps identify funding sources for a range of assistive technology. Although geared toward residents of Georgia, much of the information is applicable everywhere.

Modular Hose

Assistive Technology

ModularHose allows you to turn almost anything into a handsfree device

This cool system uses flexible hose and a multitude of components to customize a way to attach items hands-free to your wheelchair or other place you might need it.

cells, DNA, retinal implants montage

Health & Nutrition, Visual Impairment

Top Medical Breakthroughs in Vision in 2014

There have been a lot of medical advances in curing blindness in the past 12 months. Read about the most exciting breakthroughs in gene therapy, stem cells, artificial retinas and...

Top 10 Accessible Toys

Toys, Visual Impairment

Top 10 Accessible Toys for Blind Kids

We recently ran a contest asking families to share their favorite toys for their kids who are blind or have other special needs. Here are the top 10 as voted...

Gizmonix Visor

Assistive Technology, Eye Conditions and Syndromes

New Gadget Addresses Tunnel Vision

There's a company that's working on a visor to help those with tunnel vision to see the full picture of what they could see without tunnel vision. It's still in...

smartphone held over menu shows text being read

iPad Apps and Accessibility, Visual Impairment

Breakthrough App Reads Print for the Blind

This cool new app lets you use your smartphone to translate printed material into spoken words, letting the user "read" virtually anything. The app is available on iTunes and was...

Woman's face wearing sunglasses

Assistive Technology, Visual Impairment

Seeing Through Sound

This technology takes sound to create "images" in the brain, by using a camera, special software, and headphones.

Visual Impairment

Lenz Frenz

These very cute stuffed animals have a hiding spot in their backs where children can safely store their glasses.

Magnified vision of cell

Health & Nutrition, Visual Impairment

3D Printing Cells is a New Step in Finding a Cure for Blindness

Researchers are using 3D printers to create artificial retinal nerve cells. They hope this will lead to using this to replace damaged retinal cells and ultimately cure retinal blindness.

Man wearing headgear-like glasses

Assistive Technology, Visual Impairment

Cool New Glasses to Help The Blind See

University of Oxford and RNIB have teamed up to create glasses that can help those with even a small amount of vision to identify objects and images. They're planning a...


Parenting, Special Needs

I may not sit, roll, walk or speak but I AM SO LOVED

Janyia is a little girl with several medical conditions: Arthrogryposis, Cerebral Palsy, Chronic lung disease and Hydrocephalus. This is her story.

Ivan and dad at the lake

Math and Science, Visual Impairment

7 Science & Nature Activities for Young Children who are Blind

Touching leaves, twigs, rocks and trees is a great way to introduce the world to your blind child. Here are 7 simple ideas to get you thinking about science and...

Front cover of iBook Reach for the Stars

Math and Science, Visual Impairment

Reach for the Stars: Free iBook for Visually Impaired Students

This free iBook, available on iTunes, is compatible with braille refreshable displays and VoiceOver on iPads, and is accessible to anyone with a visual or print impairment.

Perkins Playspace

Play, Visual Impairment

Make Your Own Play Space for Your Blind Baby!

Blind babies may need help learning how to interact with and be actively involved in their environment. You can build your own active learning play space so your baby can...

The cover of three spiral bound notebooks, in purple, blue and green

Education, Special Needs

My Special Journal: Home to School Communication Notebook

My Special Journal is a pre-printed communication notebook that lets teachers quickly summarize a special needs child's day at school.

Ivan at the grocery store

Orientation and Mobility, Visual Impairment

Community Trips for Little Explorers: Teaching your child who is blind about the community

Children with visual impairment learn by having direct, hands-on experiences with objects and events, including those in their community. These experiences can build important concepts that will prepare your child...

boy in a wheelchair playing on a computer

Assistive Technology

EasySwitch Helps Kids Access Computer Games

EasySwitch gives young children and those with learning disabilities easier ability to play computer games with switch access. You can even get these switches in a wireless version!

Texas School for the Blind

Schools for the Blind

Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired has a campus for ages 6 through 21 and support services for birth through transition from high school.

Blue vinyl safe space looks like a mini room

Autism, Behavior, Sleep

SafeSpaces: Safe Rooms and Safe Beds for Kids with Special Needs

SafeSpaces custom makes living and sleeping spaces for children with special needs, such as autism or other issues. These spaces can be beds or entire rooms that are safe and...

Nancy Shugart on stage for her TED talk.

Advocacy, Visual Impairment

Learning to Overcome Fear and Not Give Up When Growing Up Blind

Nancy Shugart talks about growing up with vision issues and how that affected the choices she made going into adulthood. This TED talk is about learning to live without fear.