Welcome, Mykal!


Big welcome to Mykal Seaton, our new Friendraising & Donor Relations Coordinator! He spent his first week learning the ropes – Jayne, one of our certified vision rehabilitation therapists, gave Mykal an immersive experience crossing 8 lanes of US 441 (with a human guide), going to the gas station, locating AND purchasing a pack of Skittles under blindfold. He’s eager to build on Dr. Shelly’s hard work! Mykal can be reached at our office or by email: mseaton@newvisionfl.org.

Goodbye, Dr. Shelly!

Dr. Shelly's Goodbye Party

It’s with a heavy heart, unbridled gratitude, and bursting optimism that we announce the departure of our development director Dr. Shelly Gerig. Shelly has been with New Vision for eight fun-filled years, weathering some storms and helping us grow and thrive. You may have befriended New Vision through Shelly, been one of her job readiness students, or met her in some other capacity with our agency. We are indefinitely grateful to Shelly for her dedication, tenacity, and love, and we will miss our Doc McMoney. Her last day is June 15.

We invite you to join us for her 8-for-8 Goodbye Party – bring $8 in honor of her 8 years at New Vision (Shelly’s last New Vision fundraiser):

When: Wednesday, June 22 – 5-7 p.m.

Where: Lake County Museum of Art, 213 W Ruby St., Tavares

RSVP: email Chantel at cbuck@newvisionfl.org so we can have a headcount for food/beverage

“Thank you to each and every friend that I have met and built a relationship with through New Vision for Independence. Whether you have volunteered or given support financially, it has made a positive impact in our community by giving our clients hope and encouragement!”

Dr. Shelly Gerig

As Helen Keller said, “When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.” While we’re sad to see Shelly go, both she and we know this is an opportunity for New Vision. We are hiring immediately. Check out our job posting and pass it on.


Chantel Buck

President/CEO, New Vision for Independence

Sensational Egg Hunt

Sensational Egg Hunt logo

Join us for a fun morning of sensory experiences and an Easter egg hunt with tons of beeping eggs! All kids under 13 are invited, but our sighted participants will be required to wear a blindfold to participate. This event is free and open to the public, but RSVPs are required.

When: Saturday, April 2, 2022 

  • 10 a.m. sensory activities & photos with the Easter bunny’s blind brother
  • 11 a.m. blindfolded audible egg hunt for children under 13 (blindfolds required to participate)

Where: Astatula Community Center

RSVP online by March 28 to be guaranteed a basket

Dining in the Dark

Dining in the Dark 2022

Dining in the Dark

Dining in the Dark is back, in-person! Experience food, drink and conversation in a new way: in this unique dining experience, you will eat dinner in darkness. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team, as part of a training exercise, will serve you wearing night vision goggles. The annual Dining in the Dark fundraiser event for New Vision for Independence will showcase that blindness does not have to be a barrier to independence.

When: March 3, 2022, 6 p.m.

Where: Venetian Center, Leesburg

Cost: $750 for a private table of 8

Large print calendars now available

Cover of 2022 Large Print Calendar

New Vision’s 2022 large print calendars are now available! These 14-month calendars are 17″x11″ when closed, bound at the top. When open, the calendar is approx. 17″x17″.

It features the lovely Helen Keller quote, “A bend in the road is not the end of the road unless you fail to make the turn.” The boxes are large for easy large print writing.

The back cover features an Amsler grid for daily check-ups on your vision.

Buy your calendar now

January 2022 Calendar

Help New Vision Win up to $15,000


Make your year-end gift to New Vision worth even more!

The Mount Dora Community Trust invited us to participate in their Giving Week grant contest again this year. The contest is based on how much is raised between November 30 and December 7 and New Vision is in the running for a matching grant up to $15,000.

Your gift can go even further, changing lives for our neighbors with vision loss!
Thank you for your generosity!

With love,
Chantel Buck, CEO
New Vision for Independence

How It Works

Make a donation in honor of New Vision between 11/30 and 12/7.

Annual Luncheon 2021

Annual Luncheon logo

Join us for a fun end-of-the-year celebration including our annual Axy Awards presentation to the most blind-friendly businesses in Lake and Sumter Counties. Help us celebrate these companies whose extraordinary customer service helps remove barriers to independence for people with vision loss in our community.

When: Tuesday, Dec. 7, 11:30-1

Where: Venetian Center, 1 Drozier Plaza, Leesburg

Cost: $20 per person or $200 for a reserved, sponsored table of 8

Food: Yummy boxed lunch from Gourmet Today: turkey breast & aged cheddar cheese sandwich OR a veggie wrap, served with potato salad, chips, cookie, and a drink.

Registration is now closed – tickets will not be sold at the door!

Crazy Bingo Fundraiser


When: 3rd Wednesday monthly at noon (12-1 p.m.)

Where: via Conference Call (our system will call the number provided at registration)

Cost: $20 Donation to Play

Must use bingo cards specifically from this event, which will be mailed upon receipt of registration. No other bingo cards are eligible to win. Must register one week in advance to get a paper card; otherwise a digital card will be sent.

Happy Birthday, New Vision!


New Vision for Independence incorporated on July 18, 2005. That means we are celebrating our Sweet 16 this month—16 years of service to Lake and Sumter counties. Happy Birthday, New Vision!

From humble beginnings with volunteers working out of their own laundry rooms to a full-service agency that grows and evolves daily to meet the needs of our community, it has been an honor to serve. Thank you for 16 amazing years!

But we’re keeping our heads turned to the future. The need has never been greater and there is so much more we can do to make our community more blind-friendly. Are you ready for what’s next?

Join in me in making a Sweet 16 gift to New Vision, both in honor of our past and a pledge for the future!

XO, Chantel Buck, President/CEO