Vision-Aid Events & Webinars

To mark the momentous global “Right to Sight” Vision 2020 initiative,  Vision-Aid is pleased to present a unique, online “Best Practices” webinar series in the spring and summer of 2020, focusing on several important topics in the field of Vision Impairment, Low Vision and Vision Rehabilitation. The webinar brings together experts from many locations around the world to offer best practices and share expereinces in these different domains. All sessions will be online and offered freely, but registration is required ! Meeting links will be sent to those who register.

Topic: Best practices in Operating a Tertiary Low Vision Center: Synopsis

Gullapalli Rao

For Dr. G.N.Rao - Founder & Chairman, L.V.Prasad Eye Inst. Hyderabad, India

During this talk, Dr. Rao and his team at LVPEI will discuss how their vision of creating a tertiary low vision center to serve the visually impaired became a reality. 
A comprehensive approach to low vision rehabilitation at the ‘tertiary level’ will be discussed using the WHO’s standards on vision rehabilitation. The framework discussed will cover topics such as type of services to be provided as minimum standards, methods of service delivery, referral linkage to secondary and primary level, and guidelines on infrastructure and human resources. The importance of networking, advocacy, awareness-raising among families and communities, and the need for up taking research and training as an essential component of services will be explained.

Dr. Gullapalli N Rao established the L V Prasad Eye Institute in Hyderabad 31 years ago and is the Founder & Chair of that Institute.  

Academic and Research Achievements:

  • Honorary Doctorates from the University of Melbourne and University of New South Wales, Australia, Dr. NTR University of Health Sciences, India, University of Bradford, UK and GITAM University, India
  • President of “Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis (AOI)”, group of 80 of the most eminent academicians in ophthalmology in the world
  • Visiting professor to many Universities in the U.S, Europe, Australia, and Asia
  • Published about 300 papers in peer-reviewed international journals
  • Editorial Boards of several international journals of ophthalmology
  • “Fellow qua surgeon” of the “Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons”, Glasgow
  • Fellow of two of the Science Academies of India
  • Fellow of National Academy of Medical Sciences.

Other Contributions:

  • Former Secretary-General and later Chair of the Board and CEO of the International Agency for Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) in which role played a pivotal role in developing and fostering the global initiative to eliminate avoidable blindness along with WHO – VISION 2020: The Right to Sight in partnership with World Health Organisation (WHO)
  • Board of Trustees, International Council of Ophthalmology (ICO)
  • Leadership Position in many National and International eye care organizations
  • Founder & Chair of L V Prasad Eye Institute, India
  • Boards of many national and international organizations.

For more details, Click Here

Date:  June 6th at 7:30 AM IST

(June 5th, 10 pm EST.)

Please adjust for your own time zone!

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE

Click Here To Register

coming soon !!!


Dr. Beula Christy, Head, Institute for Vision Rehabilitation, L.V.Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad, India

Beula Christy holds a post-graduation in vision science (MRSc) Holy Cross College in Tiruchirapalli, and a postgraduate diploma in guidance and counseling from Annamalai University, Tamil Nadu. She followed this with a PhD in vision science from the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney. She was trained by international agencies such as Bartimeus, the Netherlands, and Hilton Perkins on early intervention of multi-handicapped. She has rich experience in community outreach services; she was instrumental for CBR projects in the rural Andhra Pradesh and Telangana states.

Christy has 27 years of rich experience in rehabilitating people with visual impairment across all age groups and her professional interests lie in the area of early intervention, particularly in dealing with children with vision impairment and multiple disabilities. Currently, she is heading the ‘Institute for Vision Rehabilitation’ that focuses on providing low vision and rehabilitation care across the LVPEI’s network through center-based and community-based approaches.

Topic: Best Practices in Enabling, Educating and Empowering the Vision Impaired – The Vision-Aid Model


Ramakrishna (Ram) Raju, Founder, Vision-Aid

During this talk Mr. Raju will provide an insight into the Vision-Aid model, a comprehensive set of programs and best-practices which have been developed over the past 15 years of enabling, educating and empowering the visually impaired, across multiple locations in India. The Vision-Aid model aims to provide a holistic, 360-degree approach to Vision Rehabilitation. The speaker will discuss several exciting new initiatives underway at Vision-Aid including enabling the visually impaired with low-cost, high-technology devices, educating them with advanced skills training and rehabilitation programs and empowerment of the visually impaired through advocacy, inclusion and employment.

Ram Raju is the founder and volunteer executive director of Vision-Aid, a nonprofit serving the visually impaired. Ram holds a master’s degree in Computer Science from the Pennsylvania State University, and an ALM degree from   Harvard. Ram was recognized for his public service by Harvard University with the Derek Bok Public Service prize in 2019 and the “Making a Difference Award” in 2019 from CHI among others.

Date: Thursday, May 28th, 10 – 11 PM USEST

(Friday, May 29th, 7:30 – 8:30 AM IST.)

  Please adjust for your own time zone!

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE


Topic : The importance of Vision: Visual development and Low Vision in infants and small children


Dr. Linda Lawrence MD Ophthalmologist

During this webinar, Dr. Linda Lawrence will explore the importance of Visual development and Low Vision in infants and small children, and the special considerations and best practices for pediatric low vision services.

Dr. Linda Lawrence, an internationally renowned Opthalmologist, runs her private practice in Comprehensive ophthalmology with pediatric emphasis in Salina, Kansas. 

A vocal advocate for earlier detection and interventions, she has not only documented the high rate of undiagnosed ocular pathology in infants and toddlers with developmental disabilities and coauthored a book chapter on Pediatric Low Vision, she has also trained trainers from South and Central America, India, Africa, China, Vietnam, and the Middle East, apart from the USA, in this area.

She has worked with the WHO to develop the International Low Vision Rehabilitation Standards and spoken at many international conferences and authored a book chapter on Pediatric Low Vision.

She volunteers with several organizations- ORBIS, Kansas State School for the Blind, Centro Ann Sullivan del Peru (CASP) for students with neuro-developmental disabilities, with CDC on the congenital Zika syndrome, and University of Kansas as a Volunteer Assistant Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology.

Dr. Lawrence was numerous awards to her name – International Humanitarian Services Award, Senior Achievement Award and Secretariat Award from the AAO (American Academy of Ophthalmology ), and an achievement award from AAPOS (American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus) to name a few!

Date : Tuesday May 26, 0730 AM – 0830 AM (IST)

( Monday May 25, 10 PM- 11 PM US EST )

Please adjust for your own time zone!

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE

Click Here To Register

Topic : Best Practices in Communicating with individuals with MDVI

Neha Sharma,
Speech-Language Pathologist,
BS(Linguistics and Cognitive Science),
MS (Communication Sciences & Disorders)

In this Webinar, Neha will outline best practices in communicating with individuals with Multiple Disabilities and Vision Impairments. The following topics will be discussed:

  • Communicating with those with MDVI
  • Assess the child, not the diagnosis
  • Basic communicative functions
  • Accommodations for optimal communicative access

Neha Sharma is a Speech-Language Pathologist and has been practicing for 16 years. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Linguistics and Cognitive Science and a Master’s of Science degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders. She has worked with preschool, elementary, and middle school aged children in private and public-school settings. She has specialized in addressing the communicative needs of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and those with significant global challenges due to severe comorbid diagnoses. In addition to ameliorating the communication disorders of these children, Neha is passionate about providing students and families with behavioral and augmentative and alternative communication strategies to carryover in all settings.

She has developed many thematic activities linked to school curriculums, community activities, and vocational tasks that address social pragmatics, expressive and receptive language skills, fluency, and articulation. Neha also has a strong interest in working with multilingual families and students to best support their communicative needs. She is passionate about working with students with significant needs and currently practices in the Deafblind Program at the Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown, MA USA.

 Date: Friday  May 22 7:30 – 8:30 AM IST

 (Thursday  May 21 10 – 11 PM EST)

Please adjust for your own time zone!

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE



Topic: The Role of Orientation and Mobility in the World of the Visually Impaired

Karina Thompson
Karina Thompson,

This seminar will focus on how individuals with visual impairment are better able to travel with greater independence using taught strategies and tools. The difference between direct teaching and incidental learning, guidance strategies, and the five points of travel will be discussed.

Karina Thompson is an Occupational Therapist with a M.Ed. in Orientation and Mobility who works at the Massachusetts Association for the Blind as a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) and Occupational Therapist for individuals with visual impairment.

 Date:  Monday, May 18 th, 5 – 6 PM India Time 

 (Monday May 18th , 7:30 – 8:30 AM US EST)

Please adjust for your own time zone!

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE

Click Here To Register

Topic: Overview of CVI: Definition and considerations around assessment and habilitation


Dr. Barry Kran, OD, FAAO

Dr. Kran’s current research interests involve developing appropriate diagnostic vision tests for individuals with disabilities with normative data surrounding these tests, understanding and developing a database of the vision-related outcomes of low incidence conditions, and breaking the barriers to eye care that individuals with disabilities encounter. Currently, he is exploring a novel contrast sensitivity test which aims to be useful for individuals with reduced cognitive function and/or expressive communication skills. Dr. Kran is also investigating the various aspects surrounding the diagnosis of individuals with cortical visual impairment, the leading cause of pediatric blindness.

During this talk Dr. Barry Kran will offer an overview of CVI – starting from its definition and going on to explore considerations around assessment and habilitation.

For the past nineteen years, Dr. Kran has been working with individuals with visual and other impairments. He is the Optometric Director of the New England College of Optometry (NECO) Center for Eye Care at the Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown. This clinic is also the base for his research and collaboration with Drs. Mayer and Ross at NECO and with others in the Boston area performing cutting edge research on Cerebral Vision Impairments (CVIs). CVI is the leading cause of pediatric vision impairment in the developed world.

 Date:  Thursday, May 14 th, 5 – 6 PM India Time 

 (Thursday, May 14th, 7:30 – 8:30 AM US EST)

Please adjust for your own time zone!

Session mode: Online

Registration fee: FREE



Title: Overcoming Barriers to Low Vision Care

Dr. Alexis

Dr. Alexis "Lexi" Malkin , OD, FAAO

This presentation will discuss strategies for overcoming barriers to providing low vision care. Common challenges and their solutions will be presented as well as a brief discussion surrounding the integration of telemedicine into low vision care.

Dr. Malkin is a graduate of Emory University and completed her optometry training at New England College of Optometry (NECO), where she graduated salutatorian. She completed her residency at the Northport VA Hospital with a focus in primary care optometry, low vision rehabilitation and vision therapy. Dr. Malkin then completed the Lions Vision Rehabilitation Fellowship at Johns Hopkins in 2010. 

Dr. Malkin is on faculty at New England College of Optometry as an Associate Professor of Clinical Optometry. She has a focus on vision rehabilitation didactically and clinically. Dr. Malkin has published numerous peer-reviewed manuscripts in low vision rehabilitation and clinical outcomes. In addition, Dr. Malkin has lectured throughout the US and internationally on a variety of topics including Patient Outcomes, Optics, and technology in Low Vision.

 Date: Tuesday, May 12th, 17:00- 18:00 PM India Time

(Tuesday, May 12th, 07:30 AM- 08:30 AM US EST)

Please adjust for your own time zone! 

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE



Topic : Advances in Low Vision Technology

de bhavani

Dr. Bhavani Iyer, OD, FAAO

Low vision devices have come a long way. From simple handheld devices to the complex head mounted electronic options, low vision devices continue to change the lives of those that are fitted with it. This talk explores the gamut of options available to those that are visually impaired.. During this talk, Dr. Bhavani Iyer will explore a wide range of low vision devices and technology. 

Dr. Bhavani Iyer OD, FAAO is an associate professor at the University of Texas, McGovern Medical School in Houston. She is the director of the Dan Arnold Center for Vision Rehabilitation, a comprehensive vision rehabilitation program complete with occupational therapy and orientation mobility training.

 Date: Wednesday, May 6th, 7:30 – 8:30 AM India Time

(Tuesday, May 5th, 10 PM – 11 PM US EST)

Please adjust for your own time zone! 

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE



Topic : Identification and Intervention - The Key to Reaching and Teaching Children with MDVI

Kristen Layton (Director, Perkins India)

Kristen Layton
( Director, Perkins India )

The 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 4 call for nations “to ensure health and well-being for all, at every stage of life” and for “inclusive and quality education for all.”  An accurate count and assessment of children with visual impairments, including those with multiple disabilities, is the first step to reaching these goals.Children with multiple disabilities and vision impairment (MDVI) are at the greatest risk of being left behind in education and in life which means these children are among the most vulnerable in the world.Please join, Kristen Layton, Director of Perkins India in a discussion to address the following questions:
1) Who are the population of children with MDVI?
2) How can we improve screening, assessment and identification procedures?
3) What integrated approaches to intervention work toward achieving educational access?

Kristen Layton is the Director of Perkins India, a program of Perkins School for the Blind. Prior to leading the team in India, she served as the Director of Strategy, Innovation and Learning and helped launch Perkins International’s programs in the Middle East and North Africa.
Before coming to Perkins in 2009, Kristen led the launch of the Inclusive Schools Network at the Education Development Center, Inc. She has held positions at Boston College, the University of Maryland, the National Deaf-Blind Project, Helen Keller National Center and as a special education teacher in New York. She holds degrees in Elementary and Special Education.

 Thursday, April 30th,  5 – 6 PM India Time
(Thursday April 30th, 7:30 AM  – 8:30 AM US EST) 

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE


***Missed  live Webinar? Don’t worry You can watch our recorded video ***


Topic : Best Practices in Vision Rehabilitation - An Occupational Therapy Perspective


Dr. Loubaina Buxamusa, PhD

During this talk, Dr. Loubaina will explore the following best practices in Vision Rehabilitation from an Occupational Therapy perspective.

  • Using occupation as a means and an end
  • Creating meaningful patterns of engagement across contexts
  • Addressing performance issues holistically
  • Linking client factors to outcomes
  • Assessing the client first, then the disability
  • Making the process dynamic and interactive in nature

Dr. Loubaina Buxamusa is an occupational therapist who holds Bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy from the University of Mumbai, a Master’s degree in special education from the Framingham State University, and a Doctorate degree in occupational therapy from the American International College in USA. She has 38 years of experience working as a pediatric occupational therapist with a variety of populations.

 Date:  Tuesday, April 28th, 7:30 – 8:30 AM India Time

(Monday April 27th, 10 PM – 11 PM US EST) 

Session mode : Online

Registration fee: FREE


***Missed  live Webinar? Don’t worry You can watch our recorded video ***


Stay tuned for details! All events are offered freely but registration is required. Meeting links will be sent to registered participants.