Direct Services

UWCTDS offers direct service through the following four programs. 

Washington Assistive Technology Act Program (WATAP) 

Through WATAP, we offer information to family members, employers, employment service providers, educators, health care providers, social service providers and others seeking assistive technology services and knowledge. 

At WATAP you can:

WATAP’s experienced Assistive Technology Specialists provide expertise to all UWCTDS consultations, evaluations, trainings, and technical assistance related to AT.

UW Employment Program (UWEP)

The UW Employment Program (UWEP) provides a wide variety of community based services for individuals who have a developmental, or other, disability, and are looking for work. Services include functional assessments on actual work sites, job development and matching, on the job training, and long-term follow up.

Blind Skills Services for Adults

Blind Skills Services for Adults is a Department of Services for the Blind (DSB) program.   Since 2009, CTDS has been managing all aspects of the program, including subcontract management, federal and state reporting, and risk management. Every year, Blind Skills Services provided services to over 1500 Washington State residents who are losing vision or blind.

Blind Skills Services empowers adults to live independently in their homes and communities. The services we provide, at no cost to the client, are designed to help individuals who are visually impaired continue to lead a full life. We teach new ways to manage daily tasks safely and independently. We provide counseling to help adjust to vision loss and build self-confidence. And, we create the chance to be self-sufficient by sharing information about community resources and support services. We utilize a network of providers, approved by the Washington State Department of Services for the Blind, who are located throughout the state.  Our experienced teachers visit clients in their home, assist clients in making informed choices about goals, and teach clients the new skills needed to achieve those goals.  Once set, goals are usually achieved after three or four visits. The only eligibility requirement is that clients must be Washington State residents and have experienced vision loss or blindness impacting their ability to be independent in any aspect of life.

Service Highlights:

  • We provide simple and effective methods for performing everyday tasks, such as: preparing meals, shopping, dialing the telephone, identifying clothing and money, organizing finances, dealing with incoming mail, and telling time.
  • We teach the skills our clients need to get around independently in their home and community using a cane or other techniques.
  • We maximize remaining vision by providing magnification devices, training in the use of these devices, and providing proper lighting.
  • In addition to magnification devices, we also can supply low vision aids and other devices (like a talking watch or a cane) if those aids will be beneficial.
  • We offer emotional adjustment counseling for our clients who are experiencing grief, fear, or even anger as their vision declines.
  • We help connect our clients to other services that they may qualify for and benefit from, such as talking books, recreational activities, peer support groups, or para-transit services.
  • Our services are free; the low vision aids and devices are typically free.

You can find more information through DSB’s website: http://www.dsb.wa.gov/services/skills-blindness-home.shtml. Contact the DSB at 800-552-7103 or send an inquiry to info@dsb.wa.gov for more information.

iCanConnect (National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program)

iCanConnect serves people from a wide range of backgrounds, including older people who have lost their sight and hearing later in life, people with Usher and CHARGE Syndromes, and others with combined significant vision and hearing loss who meet federal income guidelines. The equipment we provide includes smartphones, tablets, computers, screen readers, braille displays, and adaptive software. Washington State has the second highest population of deaf blind individuals in the United States. Washington Assistive Technology Act Program (WATAP) collaborates with Perkins School for the Blind to provide iCanConnect services to these individuals. Those interested in applying to the program should contact The Washington Assistive Technology Act Program at icanWA@uw.edu