Weekly half-hour program, Mondays at 5:00 p.m. and Sundays at 12:30 p.m. on WXXI Reachout Radio

Enabled is a weekly program designed to help you be confident in saying “I can!”  The program takes a deep look into services, products and issues affecting people with vision loss. Topics are broad in scope, covering such things as adaptive technology; preferred language; election rights; audio description; vision loss & art history; visual hallucinations; the latest information & research on eye disease and even daily living products that can make your life easier.

Ways to Connect

Politicians and journalists, now that certainly is an ‘odd couple’ considering our current situation. In this program I have discovered common ground and that is blindness.  You will hear about a blind journalist and her interview with a blind politician. You’ll also hear about a man who is the North American political correspondent for the BBC. 

How about paddling a Dragon Boat? Why not give Kabaddi a try? This program will give you an idea of how these and other sports from around the world have been specially adapted for people who are blind or visually impaired. Get ready to challenge yourself.

In today's program, you’ll hear about The Vision and Art Project, sponsored by the American Macular Degeneration Foundation. You will hear about several of the artists, all of whom had macular degeneration and found a way so they could continue making art.

This week’s program will bring you information about a rare form of eye cancer called Ocular Melanoma. I’ll have an inspirational story first and this will be followed by lots of information about this disease.  

Have you ever seen something, and then realized it’s not actually there? You might have seen people, animals or intricate patterns. These troublesome images might be visual hallucinations possibly caused by your serious eyesight problems. This program is a personal story about visual hallucinations, also called the Charles Bonnet Syndrome.


Lasik is a very popular form of laser surgery used to correct vision. In this program, an article from the New York Times will explain the risks and the long term side effects of the procedure.

Vision Health is the overall topic for this program with a major emphasis on Glaucoma. You will hear about glaucoma screening, the genetic connection, selective laser surgery,  minimally invasive surgery and even about a superbowl MVP.

Vision loss and depression – is there  a connection?  This week you’ll hear about a program called Project REBUILD.  To start things off, there will be a man who woke up blind and how Project REBUILD helped him. There will also be information about how technology might help you.   

What’s that smell? It can be good, bad or something in between, but in any case it gives you a clue about your surroundings. This week’s program will take you on a smelling tour of New York City and will also provide you with some more scientific information about your sense of smell.

Are you making your travel plans? It's that time of year! In this program you will meet a world traveler, Tony Giles. You’ll find out about all the places he’s been and how he gets around in spite of the fact that he is legally blind and almost totally deaf.


Have you hear about "lattice degeneration?" That is just one of the topics you will learn about as we take a closer look at some of the more unusual conditions that affect the retina and the macula.  Other topics will include  epiretinal membrane, vitreomacular traction, central serous chorioretinopathy and macular holes.


Many electronic devices today have what's called a virtual assistant. If you ask it a question, it will give you an answer....maybe! In this program you'll hear about the experiences of two men who are visually impaired and are using, or rather trying to use, a virtual assistant.

Get organized! Oh such good advice, but not so easy to do. In this program,  I’ll bring you some tips for organizing and labeling your clothing, as well as some ideas about doing your laundry. All to help you “Get Organized!”

If you have kids in your life, you might find that it's hard to explain your vision problems.

This program will help you. The first half contains actual information about blindness written so kids can understand it. The second half contains ideas for leading kids toward knowledge about blindness.

A visually impaired actress plays the part of a visually impaired character on a popular TV show.  This program will tell you about Marilee Talkington and the role she recently played on a milestone NCIS program. 

In this program you’ll hear recent information about the possible causes of what you might call “seeing stars.”  Plus, you’ll hear about pinpoint pupils, the condition that is also called myosis. 

Emergency situations can be created by natural causes, by technological issues or even by our fellow human beings.  In any case, it would be prudent if you were prepared in the best way possible. Think about it ahead of time and make some plans. This program offers good ideas for everyone, especially those who have a visual disability.

Just a little bit of help would make such a difference. In this program, you'll hear about audio description for our national parks' brochures, new help that is being offered by Google, Microsoft and Be My Eyes. And I'll include a few universal design tips. All of these topics will

provide just a little bit of help.

Puppies in your dorm room? At some colleges they are not only allowed in your dorm room but they also can go to class with you. In this program, you'll hear about guide dog puppy raisers on campus. We'll visit Ithaca College, the University of Maryland and a few others.

If you have low vision and are faced with the decision about giving up driving, there might be a way to continue to drive a car safely. This program will share information about bioptic driving, and it might help you to keep your keys.


You are exposed to blue light from many sources: the sun, the lightbulbs in your house, your TV screen and of course, those ubiquitous digital devices. This week, the program will focus on blue light and whether it's good for you or bad for you.

It’s difficult to think about and difficult to talk about: Violence against people who are blind. In this program I will share two personal stories of domestic abuse with you and then I’ll have information about self defense as well as  background information about domestic violence. I will also include  contact information if you need help.

In this program you will hear lots of new information about glaucoma. The program will include new medications, a new method of administering the drops and even a way to test your IOP at home. Other short topics will be included, too.

This program is in two parts. The first half will bring you information about your social security benefits if you are blind or visually impaired. The second half will feature information about retinal imaging.

This week's program will be in two parts. The first will feature words of encouragement for parents of children who are blind. The second part will be about a free and useful smartphone app called "Be My Eyes."

Floaters and flashes in your vision happen to almost everybody. But at some point, these become NOT normal and should be considered an eye emergency. In this program I'll share the personal story of Reachout Radio Program Director Ruth Phinney and her experience with floaters, flashes and the resulting retinal tear.


Points of Light

Summer camp can be a life-changing experience for all kids and especially for kids with visual impairments. In this program learn about Dr. Lauren Lieberman and the summer sports camp she founded called Camp Abilities.

Enabled #1806: Sports Talk, 02/05/18

Feb 5, 2018

In this week's program, I’ll be bringing you some sports talk, motivated by the forthcoming Olympics in Pyongchang, South Korea. I’ll explain blind hockey, I will reveal a most unusual pastime of the French Paralympic skiers, and I’ll go over what’s happening at the 2018 Paralympics coming up in March in Korea. 

Center For Sight

In this week’s program you will be hearing more from a brochure called “The Art of Living Well with Low Vision.”  There will be information on low vision aids and how to adjust to them. I’ll also have contact information for companies that supply these assistive devices.

Enabled #1803: AMD Research, 01/15

Jan 15, 2018

It is said that research is creating new knowledge. This program will bring you some of that new knowledge about age related macular degeneration. It will include information about research studies on fruit flies, stem cells and the Parkinson's drug, l-dopa.  Learn more about this research.