What is the UPBC?

The purpose of the organization is to create a climate of opportunity for blind children in home, school and society; to provide information and support to parents of blind children; to facilitate the sharing of experiences and concerns among parents of blind children; to develop and expand resources available to parents and their blind children; to help parents of blind children gain understanding and perspective through partnership and contact with blind adults; and to function as an integral part of the National Federation of the Blind and the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children in their ongoing efforts to eliminate discrimination and prejudice against the blind and to achieve for the blind security, equality and opportunity.

The membership is open to parents of blind children, educators of blind children and others interested in promoting the purposes of this organization.

We are a division of the National Federation of the Blind which is the largest organization of the blind in the country. Refer to: http://www.nfb.org/

Utah Parents of Blind Children is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization

Thursday, March 20, 2014

My First NFB of Utah/UPBC State Convention! -Tara Pursel

It's that time of year again! Time for the NFB of Utah/Utah Parents of Blind Children annual state convention! You may be thinking to yourself that you'd like to join us, that you'd like to take the time out of your day, but you're probably wondering “What's in it for me?” After all, as any parent of a blind child knows, if you're taking time out of your day, it better be worth it! To you, time is precious, and there never seems to be enough of it in the day!

I was also skeptical about state convention my first year. I remember how overwhelmed I felt, but was driven to convention by the need to connect with people who knew what I was going through, who had been where I had been, and were willing to offer advice and first-hand experience.

I didn't know many people in attendance, and thus, tried to keep to myself. That plan was quickly foiled by so many parents and blind adults alike who went out of their way to offer their advice and support, their encouragement, and to just make me feel welcome. These connections are ones I have maintained ever since, and have proven invaluable in my journey as the parent of a blind child.

There was also much to be learned from the information provided in breakout sessions, where I learned about the latest in technology and accessibility, and testing as it pertains to a child with a visual impairment. And along with there being much to be learned through demonstrations and classes, we also had a lot of fun over the course of the three days! We enjoyed some amazing food, played some awesome games, heard from incredible guest speakers, and enjoyed an exquisite banquet to finish out an amazing three days. And when all was said and done, I wound up winning an Ipad Mini!  How's THAT for a door prize?!

After my first year at state convention, I felt the need to hit the ground running as an advocate for my child. The drive and determination I felt after that first encounter with the UPBC will stick with me for years to come, and I'm even more excited about this year's state convention, now that I know to expect an amazing experience! I hope you join us this year, and look forward to meeting you!

Click here for more information about the NFB of Utah Annual State Convention.

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