[Video of an elderly female participating in various activities, including playing the piano and singing in church. The video follows her journey to a Low Vision Center and describes how the Center helped her to participate in the activities she enjoyed in spite of her low vision.]
Mary: I was standing at the kitchen table, working, and got ready to fix lunch, and couldn’t see the mailbox. So then I immediately became alarmed and thought that something really was bad.
Narrator: Mary Bailey of Leeds, Alabama has macular degeneration. It’s a disease that destroys sharp, central vision.
Mary: I don’t see anything in the center of anything I look at now.
Narrator: Mary has always played piano and organ at church, but with low vision she was no longer able to read music.
Mary: I cried so long and so hard because I couldn’t play, I couldn’t teach. I wasn’t good for nothing I thought.
Narrator: In desperation, Mary went to a low vision center. What she learned there transformed her life.
Doctor: The very first day Mary came to our clinic, she had already lost her vision, and then as the exam went on she started coming more and more out of her shell, and so by the end of the exam it was almost a different person than the one that walked in the door.
Mary: The low vision people over there were so helpful.
Narrator: The right kinds of visual aids can make life easier for people with low vision. There’s a lot people with low vision can do to lead normal lives. Mary Bailey was able to take charge of her life once again.
Mary: I found this recipe that was called skillet cookies.
Narrator: She even runs a low vision support group. And thanks to low vision technology, she is able to play piano again in church.
Mary: I felt like I had accomplished something. To me it was a milestone. To be able to do it back in the church.