• P.O. Box 65900 Washington, D.C. 20035-5900
  • 202-670-1038
  • P.O. Box 65900 Washington, D.C. 20035-5900
  • 202-670-1038

This site is dedicated to the dissemination of information to all veterans with sensory disabilities.

It is with a heavy heart that the Blinded American Veterans Foundation announces the passing of one of our founding members John “Sgt. Shaft Fales.  John was a patriotic American, loving husband, supportive father and a dedicated Marine. His veterans advocacy work and the Sgt. Shaft newspaper column and blog helped tens of thousands of veterans understand and receive their veterans benefits along with keeping them abreast of what is happening in our nation when it concerns veterans lives as well as their families. Please feel free to visit our memorial page for John Fales by clicking here.

The Blinded American Veterans Foundation is very excited to host Corporal’s Corner; a new veteran advocacy blog administered by our very own Michael Jernigan.

We at the Blinded American Veterans Foundation are proud to announce a new program that we are launching in 2019.  We are calling it our Meet and Move program.  We at the BAVF realize that we have over 1 million blind or visually impaired veterans over the age of 45.  As a result of vision loss many of the veterans we service report that the most difficult thing they face are transport problems. Additionally, loss of vision causes an inability to shop alone.  Our veterans have reported a failure of other people to treat them as the individual they have always been.  They have also reported a difficulty in forming new social relationships because of lack of non-verbal cues or eye contact.

To help battle these reported issues the BAVF will be partnering with different national veteran service organizations and community based non-profit organizations to help get these veterans out of their houses to meet and move.  It will partner blind veterans with youth volunteers in public areas like shopping malls allowing them to get out of the house and not only get moving by walking in climate-controlled areas but they will also get social interaction with a younger generation of Americans.  This program will introduce a new generation of Americans to not only people who have served their country but are also living with a disability.  We hope that this will inspire this new generation to not only understand what service means but to also teach them compassion and empathy for those living with disability.  In addition, we believe that this will be instrumental in helping the overall wellbeing of the veterans who participate by not only getting them physically active but by also giving them a partner that they can socially interact with.

Every year around Flag Day, BAVF holds a Congressional Awards Ceremony and patriotic picnic. Photos and videos of previous events can be found on our Flag Weekpage. This was our 33rd year of holding this annual event. Here’s the official press release link. Our 2018 Flag Week page, listing this year’s Congressional award recipients and media of the event, is at this link.

Some interesting recent technology news: Microsoft collaborated with Apple and industry organizations to develop an USB-IF Human Interface Design (HID) standard for braille displays. Announced by the USB Implementers Forum(USB-IF) on May 31, 2018, the standard will enable plug and play support for braille displays and has received broad support from the tech industry, assistive technology (AT) companies and non-governmental organizations advocating for people who are blind or have low vision

A few random items that we’ve gathered and posted over the years are below.

An archived news report from CBS News. It is about the BAVF and John Fales. The report contains both a video and a transcript.

Statement from the VA Northern Indiana Health Care System (VANIHCS) Visual Impairment Service Team (VIST)regarding a donation by BAVF.

John Fales (a.k.a. Sgt. Shaft) was interviewed by Bob Madigan of WTOPradio. Click here to hear the interview.

An article on BVA’s website by the BAVF’s Secretary, Dr. Dennis Wyant.

We noticed an app for iPhone and Android that could be a huge help for the blind. It is called “Be My Eyes“. More information can be found at their website https://www.bemyeyes.com/.