Wins ‘Be the Difference Awards’ Honor For Work at Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired Volunteer
Scotts Valley resident Patrice Maginnis has been selected by the Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz as an individual Be the Difference Awards winner in a process that highlights individuals, groups and businesses that do the most to transform Santa Cruz County through volunteerism. Patrice will be an honored guest at the Volunteer Center’s 2017 recognition luncheon at the Coconut Grove on October 27 for her volunteer work with Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired.
Legally blind since birth, Patrice lost the remainder of her sight in about 2005. In order to keep lecturing at UC Santa Cruz, she turned to Vista Center for computer training that enabled her to continue working until she retired in 2013.
As a way to give back, she began her next career as a volunteer, with Vista Center Santa Cruz. Bringing 30 years of teaching experience to her delivery of technology skills for clients, Patrice has helped Vista Center establish and run a series of tech-user related classes and workshops for people who are blind or visually impaired. Additionally, she has done an in-service for Apple store employees in Monterey about access technology.
Over the past decade, technology has become an incredible resource – opening doors and creating engagement where it was once impossible for people who are blind or visually impaired. Patrice’s background in teaching, being a founding member and lead singer of Opera San Jose and performer in numerous concerts, her demeanor and condition position her as an excellent technology guide for Vista Center clients.
“We have been incredibly gifted with Patrice’s generosity in time, efforts and ideas that have helped develop and grow Vista Center’s vibrant Technology Program,” says Christy Tall, Branch Manager for Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired in Santa Cruz. “We are encouraged by her endorsement from the Volunteer Center. Patrice is incredibly deserving of this prestigious award.”
Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired is the premier regional one-stop resource provider for vision loss rehabilitation. For more than 75 years, Vista Center has offered a range of comprehensive services to empower clients to embrace life to the fullest through evaluation, counseling, education and training in Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, San Mateo and San Benito counties.
“At Vista Center we know vision loss need not be a barrier to independence. Patrice embodies this vision and goes beyond by teaching others how to increase their independence with today’s ever-changing technological advances, ” Vista Center Executive Director Pam Brandin declares, “Patrice is a star and we are very fortunate to have her as part of our team.
Services offered at Vista Center:
- Safe and Healthy Living program assesses client needs and develops a plan of action for teaching skills that enable independence.
- Low Vision Services conducts evaluations resulting in recommendations to enhance remaining vision with devices, services and support.
- Technology Program that leads the way in bringing tech to those with visual impairments
- Children & Youth Services provides young clients with tools, strategies and confidence to build the future they dream of and that it is possible.
- Community Services is a resource for, and an educator in, the communities it serves through outreach, corporate in-services, and public transit counseling. n
To learn more about Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired Website: www.vistacenter.org Santa Cruz Branch Address: 3315 Mission Drive, Suite B Santa Cruz, CA 95065 Tel #: 831-458-9766