A career planning and employment resource for people who are blind or partially sighted

Working Life Resources

Below are profiles of organizations, programs, services and useful websites from around the world. Don’t hesitate to check out resources from other countries; they may be useful to you even though they aren’t specific to where you live.

  • PAL

    PAL Reading Services

    A registered charity, PAL provides recorded reading material for elementary and post-secondary school students, individuals, agencies and businesses.

     

    Keywords: Audio Canada, Pre-school, Elementary school, High school, Post-secondary, Education, Training, Communication skills, Career advancement

  • American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Directory

    Offering a large list of services in the US and Canada; you can also search via service or organizational name and you can narrow your search to specific Canadian provinces or American states. There are 325 listings under the heading “employment, job training”. 

    Keywords: directory, international, training, employment, sports and recreation, workplace accommodations, financial assistance, education, job seeking, career preparation

  • CNIB

    CNIB provides community-based support, education, advocacy for Canadians who are blind or partially sighted. CNIB offers a range of services, including personalized rehabilitation support—in one’s home, community or at a local CNIB office—as well as emotional and wellness support. As part of CNIB’s Employment Services program, employment counselors can help with career planning, job search, job retraining and workplace accommodations. Visit your province or territory’s section of the site to see what specific employment services are available in your community.

    In partnership with AFB, CNIB offers Career Connect Canada, a free resource that connects job seekers with mentors who also have vision loss.

    CNIB physical and online store provides assistive products that help with all aspects of daily life. The CNIB library offers books, magazines and newspapers in various accessible formats.

    A comprehensive mix of information, education, tools and resources, the website provides a dedicated section on Independent Living, offering tips and advice on how to keep enjoying everyday activities and stay safe doing so. The site helps people stay connected and informed through such resources as a blog, podcast and e-newsletter. It also educates readers on various eye conditions and offers an “ask the expert” section.

    Keywords: Canada, independent living, radio, podcast, online learning, library, workplace accommodations, employment services

  • Workplace Essential Skills Partnership (WESP)

    Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work

    The program, funded by Employment Ontario, gives participants tools to be competitive in the job market and the confidence to become employed. Its varied offerings include: job searching tips, resume and cover letter writing, career development sessions, interview techniques and connecting with employers. WESP also helps employers find, recruit and pre-screen qualified candidates.

    Keywords: Ontario, training, mentors, career preparation, job seeking/search skills, finding job leads, interview preparation/follow-up, career advancement, workplace accommodations

  • Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities

    Service Canada

    offers funding for local, regional, and national projects with the mission of helping people with disabilities prepare for, obtain and maintain employment or self-employment.

    Keywords: Canada, training, grants, employment, job search

  • Assistive Devices Program

    Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care

    Offers support and funding to Ontario residents who have long-term physical disabilities and provides access to personalized assistive devices, with the intention of increasing independence.

    Keywords: Ontario, accessibility, assistive technology, workplace accommodations

  • RNIB’s Guide for Employment Professionals

    Royal National Institute of the Blind (RNIB)

    ​Blind or partially sighted people should not be excluded from employment - nor should sight loss equal job loss.

    If your profession involves supporting job seekers we can help you support these clients. We work with partners to deliver tailored employment solutions, and we have developed tools to help blind and partially sighted people find work.

    We can also support welfare to work providers and those whose role involve helping blind and partially sighted people into work.

    Keywords: employment, employment professionals, employment supports for individuals who are blind or partially sighted.

  • CareerConnect - Aaron’s Adventures in Employment

    American Foundation for the Blind

    ​A video-radio series that follows Aaron, a teenager, as he searches for a job, deals with less-informed co-workers and gets college-ready, all the while offering tips, advice and good humour.

    Keywords: international, employment, high school, video, audio, success stories, mentor, training, interview preparation, interview follow up, workplace accommodation, career advancement, college preparation

  • Vision Aware

    American Foundation for the Blind and Reader’s Digest Partners for Sight

    An online resource providing free, practical, hands-on information to help promote independence and enhance quality of life for individuals who are blind or partially sighted, as well as their families, friends and service providers. Offers tips related to accessibility, living independently, employment and more.

    Keywords: international, training, online learning, career advancement, career preparation, workplace accommodations, interview preparation, interview follow-up

  • Learning Ally

    A collection of more than 70,000 digitally recorded textbooks and literature titles, downloadable and accessible on mainstream as well as specialized assistive technology devices.

    Keywords: international, directory, online learning, education, books, high- school, post- secondary, career exploration, job preparation

  • Job Search Toolkit

    RNIB

    With the aim of helping job seekers who are blind or partially sighted develop a variety of skills to help them find work, the toolkit addresses things like confidence, body language and visual presentation. It offers fact, tips, worksheets and role play exercises as well as advice on how to find the right job. Titled “Job Search, the Real Story” and comprising five modules, the toolkit also covers issues related to service providers and employers, providing them with advice on how to effectively offer employees a successful work opportunity.

    Keywords: UK, training, career preparation, job seeking/ search skills, interview preparation/follow-up, career advancement, workplace accommodations, employer concerns

  • RNIB Guide for Employers

    Royal National Institute of the Blind (RNIB)

    We understand employers may have concerns about taking on someone with sight loss, or about an existing employee who is losing their sight. RNIB have recently published a new Guide for employers.

    The guide addresses common questions and sets out the benefits of employing a blind or partially sighted person. It covers everything an employer needs to know about employing someone with sight loss, from the recruitment and interview process, to making sure the right equipment is in place for the employee to be successful in carrying out their role, and progress their career.

    Keywords: UK employers, hiring concerns, benefits of employing workers with vision loss, accommodations, Access to Work, employment schemes, barriers to employment

  • RNIB’s Employment Assessment Toolkit

    Royal National Institute of the Blind (RNIB)

    ​An employment assessment toolkit for professionals who work with blind and partially sighted people.

    Keywords: employability assessment, action plan, evaluate visually impaired individuals’ abilities and vocational experiences

  • Balance for Blind Adults

    Offers a range of services including income support, employment accommodations, language programs, adaptive technology support, recreation and health facilities. Services are only available to those living in Toronto, Ontario.

    Keywords: Toronto, Ontario, sports and recreation, training, online learning, workplace accommodation

  • AFB YouTube channel

    American Foundation for the Blind

    Fifty-one videos on a range of topics including golfing, workplace accommodation, orientation & mobility, assistive technology and Helen Keller.

    Keywords: international, interview preparation/ follow-up, career advancement workplace accommodation, online learning, training, video

  • Action for Blind People—Employment Success

    Action for Blind People

    Video by Action for Blind People showcasing a successful story of employment in the UK and the Access to Work scheme.

    Keywords: international, training, mentors, video, workplace accommodation, workstations, equipment, employer concerns

  • Online Abilities Project

    A Canadian service that partners with corporate organizations to place skilled candidates in employment related to their fields. Typically offered free for employers, who may also be eligible for a wage subsidy, the program provides the opportunity for individuals to apply their skills in the workplace. The Online Abilities program also offers a range of job support services, such as, resume preparation, career planning, job coaching, self-employment information and advice, workshops, training and guiding employers through workplace accommodations.

    Keywords: Canada, grants, training, workplace accommodations, resume preparation, job coaching, employer resources, job seeking/search skills

  • EARN: Employer Assistance and Resource Network

    With a database of over 2,000 job seekers, EARN helps employers recruit candidates with disabilities for internships and permanent employment, and offers information and training on the interview process, workplace accommodations, and disability etiquette. Its monthly newsletter profiles business success stories, employment statistics, and current events. Its focus is on the United States.

    Keywords: United States, webinars, workplace accommodation, interview preparation

  • Technology Center

    National Federation of the Blind

    Offers up-to-date lists of assistive technology with prices; technology magazines and tutorials; digital and eBook resources; and recommendations on user-friendly consumer electronics. Its Baltimore-based International Braille and Technology Center gives advice and training in person and by phone. The Access Technology Blog provides news, tips, and personal reflections on many types of assistive software and devices.

    Keywords: international, assistive technology, workplace accommodation, training, equipment

  • Link Up Employment Services for Persons with Disabilities

    An employment services agency for job seekers with disabilities that offers a comprehensive list of services, including assessments, career guidance and job search support. They also run employment-related workshops and seminars, host presentations by businesses in the community and offer wide access to a variety of self-service employment resources. The organization also help employers in assessing and organizing job accommodations, including modifications to workstations, provision of assistive devices, and job coaching for clients.

    Keywords: Canada, job search skills, self-employment support, assistive devices, workshops, job seekers, workplace accommodation

  • CareerConnect Canada

    CNIB

    A free resource for students and any job seeker looking to explore jobs and network, for employers looking to diversify their workplace and for friends or family members who want to help someone in their career exploration. CareerConnect Canada offers a mentorship program whereby people connect online with individuals who are blind or partially sighted working in their fields. Using their knowledge and first-hand experience, they provide advice, encouragement and networking opportunities and can also help employers learn about accommodations and other ways in which they can diversify their workplace. 

    Keywords: Canada, labour market information, mentor, job/self match, employer concerning, workplace accommodation, training

  • Scarborough Centre for Employment Accessibility

    Toronto District School Board

    Assists Persons with Disabilities prepare and look for employment or self-employment, as well as develop the skills necessary to maintain employment.  Offers frequent workshops on organizing your job search, document creation, resume review, job coaching,  and job fair success tips. Will soon offer a workshop about searching for a job using social networking sites such as Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter. ​

    Keywords: Toronto, social networks, job seekers, self-employment, maintaining employment

  • ARCH Disability Law Centre

    Ontario-based organization that provides legal representation and advice on a number of areas, as they relate to disability, including: accessibility, discrimination, education and employment.

    Keywords: Ontario, legal advice, legal representation, support

  • Institut Nazareth et Louis-Braille (INLB)

    Through twelve rehabilitation centres, the Institut Nazareth offers residents of Montréal, Laval, and the Montérégie region (southwest Quebec) services including vision evaluations, daily life skills training, counseling, assistance with adaptive technology, and career support. Applicants must have their vision loss confirmed by an optometrist or ophthalmologist. The organization also hosts over 6,500 offline documents on vision loss and rehabilitation, along with an online database; several videos; and an online store.

    Keywords: Québec, online store, career counselling, workplace accommodations, disability specific, skills training, training

  • Thematic Study on Work and Employment of Persons with Disabilities

    United Nation’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

    Prepared by the United Nation’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, this thematic study provides detailed information related to persons with disabilities and the right to work. It outlines workplace policies on prohibiting discrimination, enabling effective access to guidance and training, promoting employment opportunities, ensuring reasonable accommodation, protecting the rights of persons with disabilities, and more.

    Keywords: international, advocacy, research, workplace accommodations, human rights, disabilities

​​​​​​​​​​​​​
​​​​