Wednesday, March 27, 2013

OPTIONS relocation sale!

OPTIONS for Independence of Logan is relocating and needs your support with a huge fundraising sale!

1) Donations of all kinds of gently used items are needed... good condition only please. Clean out your closets, sheds, nooks and crannies and donate! Items will be accepted during business hours through Friday, April 19th. Mon-Thurs, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Fridays 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 1095 North Main St. in Logan.

2) Come to the sale on Saturday, April 27th in the OPTIONS parking lot, and buy what you need and maybe what you never knew you needed. Goodies will also be for sale. All funds will go toward the cost of relocation.
OPTIONS is a non-profit tha provides services to individuals with disabilities to facilitate their full participation in the community and raise the understanding of disability issues and access to the community.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

AT tool kits for the workplace

Five Assistive Technology tool kits from Connecticut Assistive Technology Project for the workplace: Mobility & Ergonomics, Vision & Hearing, Computer Access, Learning, Communication & Cognitive Disabilities, and an Overview of Assistive Technology for the Workplace. These kits include several low and high tech devices for use in the workplace.

Click on the pictures to see them bigger.

Computer Access
Learning, Communication & Cognitive Disabilities
AT in the Workplace Overview 

Mobility & Ergonomics

Vision & Hearing 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Smithfield family gets loan for adapted van to transport son

Don and Penny McMahon help son Isaac into his wheelchiar.
Don and Penny McMahon help
son Isaac into his wheelchair.
Don and Penny McMahon adopted Isaac 20 years ago. While making Isaac part of the family was easy, transportation was another story.
Isaac's lack of mobility due to some disabilities made it difficult for the family to take Isaac to appointments and outings.

Don said, "In my own life as a caregiver for a wheelchair bound 19-year old young man, Penny and I were becoming trapped in our home along with Isaac because of lack of transportation that was suited to him."

Now Penny can wheel Isaac into the adapted van rather than lift him into a seat.
Now Penny can wheel Isaac into the adapted
van rather than lift him into a seat.

The McMahons decided to apply for a low-interest loan from the Utah Assistive Technology Foundation to purchase an adapted van. 

"Life is so much better because if we need to go somewhere either one of us can just wheel Isaac into the van and take off," Don said.

The UATF is an intiative of the UATP that provides low-interest loans to Utahns with disabilities to purchase assistive technology equipment.

Don and Isaac demonstrating their adapted van.
Don and Isaac demonstrating
their adapted van.

"I have seen the Utah Assistive Technology Program make a difference in people's lives and give them freedom to be involved in the community and by providing technology that changes peoples lives," Don said. "I highly recommend this program."

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

AT Lab modifies a stroller to serve as a bike for boy

Felipe needed to get some more basic movement into his everyday life, according to UATP occupational therapist, Amy Henningsen.

Felipe in his new stroller bike with his mom, brother
and Tom (far left) who modified the device.
However, he's not able to do it himself because of some disabilities. His mother, Maria, likes to take the family for walks and bike rides, but this limits Felipe's actual physical participation. The Utah Assistive Technology Lab took on the challenge to get Felipe moving.

A recreational stroller was modified to act as a bike for Felipe as he sat in the stroller. As the stroller is pushed, the pedals move his legs. To do this, AT Lab assistant, Tom Bowman, took a child's bike and cut the front half off of it.

AT Lab assistant Tom Bowman
works on Felipe's bike stroller.
He then attached the small wheel over the front wheel of the stroller, so the front wheel propels the top wheel, which in turn moves the pedals that Felipe's feet are strapped into. Tom said the bike required new pedals and a specially built chain guard, but it worked.

Felipe smiles as his mom, Maria, pushes
him in the new stroller bike.
After a few coats of bright paint, the device was ready. Felipe, his mom Maria, and his little brother came to test it out at the AT Lab.

The stroller bike was a success for Maria and Felipe. Felipe can now participate in walks in bike rides with his family, and he's moving muscles he couldn't otherwise do on his own.

Tom said, "This project was a challenge, but to see the smile on his face made it more than worth it."

See all the photos on UATP's Facebook page.

Do you have a need for a special AT device? If you're a Utahn with a disability, call the AT Lab at 435-797-0699, ext. 1.

VITA Tax Prep in ASL

The Sanderson Center of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in Salt Lake is providing free tax assistance through the VITA Tax program again this year on Fridays through April 12, 2013. Appointment times will be 9, 10, 11 am for appointments in American Sign Language (ASL), or 1, 2, 3, 4 pm for appointments in voice for individuals who are hearing or Hard of Hearing.

March appointments are almost full, so if you need help with your taxes it would be good to schedule an appointment soon! (If you owe, you can fill out papers now then pay before April 15.)

For morning appointments for tax preparation in American Sign Language (ASL) - contact the front desk for an appointment at 801-657-5200 (videophone), 801-263-4860 (voice), 801-263-4862 (TTY), or by contacting Melanie Sperry at

For afternoon appointments for tax preparation in voice - two options: call 211 and request the appointment at the Sanderson Center, or whatever location you prefer - or contact Jorie Hill,, 801-263-4886 (voice) for an appointment at the Sanderson Center.

VITA tax preparers are volunteers who provide free basic income tax return preparation through electronic filing. Individuals who qualify earn less than $51,000/year and need assistance. The Sanderson center provides space, interpreters, and supports the volunteers who provide this service to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community.

Remember to bring:
•Social Security card for everyone you will claim
•Tax forms (W-2, 1098, 1099, social security income, school tuition, retirement, mortgage interest and taxes paid)
•Medical expenses (if over 7% of gross income and combined with other expenses to itemize)
•Any other things you normally deduct (tithing/gifts to charity)
•Tax papers from 2011 filing (last year's envelope)
•Checkbook for direct deposit code (checkbook needed only for direct deposit information as all payments go direct to IRS by April 15)

Friday, March 1, 2013

Mobility devices distributed in February by CReATE

Mobility devics such as power wheelchairs can prove to be very expensive and are only covered every so many years under insurance. UATP's CReATE (Citizen's Reutilizing Assistive Technology Equipment) provides a solution to this issue by refurbishing donated mobility equipment and getting back out to the community for a minimal cost.

CReATE wheelchair recipient,
Katie Christiansen.
Last month, CReATE transferred seven devices to Utahns with disabilities.

One device was a manual wheelchair that went to Katie Christiansen, whom had surgery on her knee and needed a wheelchair with an elevating leg rest. a client from KSL. Christiansen's mother saw a listing on classifieds for the device, and brought her daughter in to see the chair.

Another manual wheelchair was transferred to Tammy Roberts. A generous donation from Road Home helped Roberts pay for the wheelchair.

Do you know someone who could benefit from a mobility device? Call CReATE today 801-887-9398.