About VIPS Louisville
Before 1985, children who were blind/visually impaired in Kentucky & Southern Indiana had no access to early intervention services for their vision-specific needs. That all changed when a group of concerned citizens, lead by Sharon Bensinger, formed the idea to start VIPS. Mrs. Bensinger had no personal connection to anyone who was blind, other than being employed by American Printing House for the Blind Research Department. However, it was in that job that she took countless numbers of phone calls from desperate parents looking for services for their blind child.
With $20,000 in startup grants from WHAS Crusade for Children and Metro United Way, VIPS was born! Mrs. Bensinger was the first employee and began with a caseload of 14 families. Since that time, VIPS has grown into an impactful agency, serving approximately 500 families a year across two states, with office locations in Louisville, Lexington, and Indianapolis. VIPS Louisville operates Kentucky’s only full-time preschool for children with visual impairments, a nationally accredited program and Jefferson County, KY’s first five-star rated child care facility.
Have a Question?
Contact the VIPS Louisville office for more information!
Featured Grantor for VIPS Louisville
Louisville Downtown Lions Club
The Louisville Downtown Lions Club is a major supporter of VIPS-Louisville, having donated nearly $320,000 since the year 2000. These gifts have impacted VIPS families greatly, as they have funded our teachers to provide critical early intervention services. The Louisville Downtown Lions Club has also supported VIPS in the following ways:
• Presenting Sponsor of the Stampede for VIPS 5K
• Give For Good Louisville matching sponsor
• Capital Campaign donor
• Family Retreat
• VIPS mini bus contributor
The Louisville Downtown Lions Club is part of the world’s largest service club organization, which is comprised of 46,000 clubs and 1.4+ million members. Members do whatever is needed to help their local communities, with emphasis on vision issues. The Louisville Downtown Lions Club hosts its bi-monthly meetings at the VIPS office in Louisville.
- Paper towels
- Card stock in all colors
- Vinyl or Non-Latex disposable gloves
- Baby wipes
- Batteries (all sizes)
- Dixie cups
- Washable finger paint (especially white)
- Easel paper (12x18)
Why is early intervention so critically important?
DID YOU KNOW?
90% of what a child learns
is through their vision.
85% of the foundation of learning happens the first 5 years of their life.
Your donation directly impacts the life of children who are blind or visually impaired in Kentucky and Indiana.
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When a child is blind or has very low vision, sometimes the first thing a parent or a friend or relative says is; “He needs glasses.” But whether or not glasses will improve a child’s ability to see is dependent upon the reason for the child’s low vision or blindness. For some eye conditions/diagnoses, there IS something that will help improve vision; a surgery, a medication, a visual intervention, or prescription eye glasses. But, for many serious eye conditions, there is NOT an intervention that will improve visual acuity. And in these cases, putting glasses on a child simply will not help.Read More