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Vision Australia

Vision Australia is a leading national provider of blindness and low vision services in Australia. We work in partnership with Australians who are blind or have low vision to help them achieve the possibilities they choose in life. Vision Australia is a not-for-profit organisation with client numbers of 50,000 and we are also a major participant and partner in the international blindness community. We provide services and support for clients through 28 Vision Australia centres in NSW, ACT, Queensland and Victoria. Clinics are also held in 29 other locations and there are outreach services to the Northern Territory and Tasmania.

Contact Information

web
http://www.visionaustralia.org
phone
+61 1300 847466
Contact

Opening Hours

By appointment only.

Location

The Vision Australia Heritage collection consists of materials created, produced by or awarded to Vision Australia or its historical organisations that document that history of blindness organisations from the 1860's and their impact upon individuals. It has over 10,000 items including photographs, annual reports, tactile art, building plans and programs.

Significance

This unique collection contains materials that provide a significant interpretation of changing social attitudes, items created or used by blind or vision impaired individuals, as well as rare pieces that are the only known examples of this type within Australia.

David Glauser 1 August 2017 10:53 AM

https://victoriancollections.net.au/?q=glauser&view=58d0907cd0d0103314f35dd3 Dear Sirs, We would be most grateful if due credit for this typewriter was also given in this description to my father, Jean Maurice Glauser who in collaboration with Edward Pyke developed this writer. My father's company J M Glauser and Sons Scientific Instruments Ltd worked closely with the Royal Institute for the Blind for many years on this and other aids for the blind and designed this and other equipment. It would be a great shame if my father's contribution to facilitate the quality of life for the blind was not adequately mentioned? The typewriter was acknowledge as a major advance and is even mentioned in the Courier Mail of October 24th 1935 as the first typewriter imported into Queensland for a young blind student named Miss Mercy Griffin who was studying for University and was an accomplished musician. We have further details should you wish of this and other Braille equipment my father designed and manufactured. Your kind consideration of my family's request will be much appreciated. Yours sincerely, David Glauser Perth Western Australia

Vision Australia 8 August 2017 1:50 PM

Thanks David. We have updated records on both the JMG Stenotype and Pyke-Glauser Braille writer to reflect their wonderful heritage. We would love further details on these items. Can you please send us a message at heritage@visionaustralia.org .

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1054 items

Image

Vision Australia,

9 col. photographs

Historical information

Photos taken of clients and staff at a seminar, date unknown. People identified: Peta Nagle, John Puttick, Sue Camps, Pat Finnimore and David McKenzie.

Image

Vision Australia,

5 col. photographs

Historical information

Staff photos of: Kerry Carr (cleaner/gardener), Keith Smith (production manager) and Tom Chawner with Joe Seeto.

Inscriptions & Markings

Former workshop supervisor Tom Chawner with Joe Seeto (retiring on grounds of ill health)

Text - Sydney Industrial Blind Institution annual reports 1901-1903

Vision Australia,

1 volume, illustrations

Historical information

Annual reports for the Sydney Industrial Blind Institution, including a price list and catalogue of items manufactured by the workers.

Text - John Wilson Award citation - Katharine Margaret Rose

Vision Australia,

1 cream A3 page with tan border around edge

Historical information

"The Committee, Blind Members and Staff acknowledge and record for posterity the outstanding service given to the blind people of Victoria by (blank) This exceptional contribution, which has enriched the quality of their living, was made in a selfless and warmhearted manner in the Association tradition of caring and sharing. Inherent in the many attributes displayed were the admirable qualities of leadership, loyalty, consistency of purpose, and a great generosity of spirit. In recognition of this distinguished service we now pay tribute to and honour Katherine Margaret Rose in the presentation of the John Wilson Award." Signed by Diana J. Jones (President), John Cook (staff representative), B. J. Sittlington (Chairman, Blind Members Council) on 16th October 1967.

Text - Association for the Blind, Blind Members' Council meeting minutes 10/8/1976 to 1/10/1982

Vision Australia,

Paper register

Historical information

The Association for the Blind, Blind Members' Council meeting minutes 10/8/1976 to 1/10/1982. These meetings were held at the Kooyong office and the minutes include Present, Chair, Apologies, Minutes, Matter arising from minutes, Correspondence, Life governors, Election of members, Nominations, Reports from Regional Blind Members groups, Date of next meeting. 1/8/1979 Mr Maxwell reported from an article in Sound Magazine which stated that if the present circulation of 2,600 copies of the Large Print Age was not increased it may have to be discontinued. 5/3/1980 a letter of thanks was sent to Sister Toni Cocks for her effort in arranging for Telecom to produce the raised large print telephone dials at no charge to the visually impaired. 2/3/1982 The Secretary reported that the ANZ Bank cheque templates will be launched Australia wide on March 16 and will be on display at the Kooyong Family Fair. 2/7/1982 The Secretary reported that the National Bank has produced a cheque template and that Westpac is proposing to do the same 4/51982 includes a draft copy of AFB philosophies.

Text - RVIB Wodonga Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Letters --newspaper clippings -- index cards and various loose papers

Historical information

The Wodonga RVIB Auxiliary formed on March 23, 1932. This small collection contains index cards which were maintained by RVIB and contain the amount of donations made by the Auxiliary between 1976 - 1995 as well as the presentations delivered by RVIB employees to Auxiliary meetings between 1978 - 1985. Correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1990 - 2005. A survey from RVIB head office in 1999 reveals the average age group of the committee and members was 70-80 years old. Includes a brief background of the Auxiliary.

Text - Certificate of Quality Assurance System registration, April 2003 : 201 High Street

Vision Australia,

1 certificate

Historical information

Certificate reads "Certificate of Registration. RVIB Enterprises, 201 High Street, Prahran, VIC 3181 Australia complies with the requirements of AS/NZS ISO 9001:2000 Quality Management Systems Requirements for the following capability: This registration covers the Quality Management System for the provision of case management, production, resources, and support services including education, course development and provision of training, rehabilitation, employment, technology, information and fundraising for people who are blind or vision impaired. The registration also includes the provision of commercial products and services through RVIB Enterprises." Signed: Alex Ezrakhovich, General Manager Certification. Certificate #: QEC12897/002. Issue Date: 1st April 2003. Certified Date: 29th December 1999. Expiry Date 19th March 2006.

Object - Playing cards with moon type

Vision Australia,

Playing cards with red, black and white design with moon type at top left-hand and bottom right-hand corners in orange metal hinged box.

Historical information

A 52 playing card set with moon type designed by the leading firm of playing card manufacturers in England during this period - Thomas de la Rue & Company.

Text - Quarterly general meeting of the Queensland Society of Blind Citizens: 19/11/1974 - 17/8/1976

Vision Australia,

1 book

Historical information

Minutes of the Queensland Society of Blind Citizens committee including centre activities, staffing changes, fund raising appointment and resignation of committee members and life governorships. Some highlights include: 19/11/1974 - the final meeting of the Queensland Musical, Literary and Self Aid Society for the Blind, dissolving it and vesting all assets to the Queensland Society of Blind Citizens. 21/11/1975 - a report of duplicity from a man who gave a false name and identification, then sold cash and property before absconding. 2/6/1976 - members in Townsville are desirous of purchasing a property to utilise as a headquarters. 41 Armstrong Street, Hermit Park was approved for purchase on 29/6/1976.

Image

Vision Australia,

42 col. photographs

Historical information

Images taken of staff during the late 1990's. These include: Pat Finnimore (Board Director 10/98), Geoff Melvin (Board Lawyer), Peta Nagle (Director, 1998), Sue Camps (Manager Employment Placement Service, July 1998), Margaret Ford (Finance Manager, various) and Branka Codasic (Accounts Officer, various), general staff offices, Tracey Millwood (1997), Peter Lynam (CEO Vision QLD, various dates) and Kevin O'Mahoney (Manager - Aid for the Blind Incorporated, March 1998), Glen (Cleaner/Gardener, 1997), David McKenzie (Development Manager, 1998), John Johnson (Sales Manager, 1996), Dene Vilkins (Project Co-ordinator and Assistant Manager, March 1996), Nigel Irwin (Client Services Manager, various), Carolyn Kalymnios (Canteen manager), Bray Waterman (Production Manager), Michael Thorn (Production Worker) and MIchael Box (Vision QLD client, 1997).

Inscriptions & Markings

Pat Finnimore, Board Director 10/98 Peter Lynam, First Chief Executive Officer of Vision QLD

Object - Braille hand frame and stylus

Vision Australia,

1 wooden back board with metal hand frame and stylus

Historical information

Braille hand frames and styluses were the primary way to produce Braille for over a century. The stylus was used to make a separate indentation for each dot, and the hand frame to keep dots within the same cell. Braille rows are produced from right to left. The process was very time consuming. Volunteer transcribers for the library could take an average of ½ hour to produce one page of Braille using this method. For example: “Oliver Twist” required approximately 600 sheets equating to 300 hours of work! This wooden slate, which was used to make the system portable, served as a firm base needed to sustain puncture pressure. The frame can also be slotted into both sides of the slate, thereby ensuring that the lines of Braille were straight across the page. The metal clasp at the top of the frame held the wooden which kept paper from slipping.

Inscriptions & Markings

156 carved into wooden frame

Image - Carols by Candlelight various images

Vision Australia,

10 coloured slides

Historical information

Various slides of Carols by Candlelight performers.

Inscriptions & Markings

3 singers P14 D Carols Candlelight P14 D

Image

Vision Australia,

3 x col. photographs

Historical information

ABC journalist and presenter Edwin Maher is given an award from the Association for the Blind offices in Mount Eliza.

Text - RVIB Heywood Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Index cards--various loose papers and letters

Historical information

The Heywood RVIB Auxiliary formed in 1944. This small collection contains correspondence to and from RVIB head office between ranging between 1990 -1996. The index cards were maintained by RVIB and contain the amount of donations made by the Auxiliary between 1976-1995, as well as the presentations delivered by RVIB employees to Auxiliary meetings between 1978-1985.

Object - Tilly Aston relief

Vision Australia,

Bronze relief of Tilly Aston

Historical information

Tilly Aston was the founder of the Association for the Advancement of the Blind, which became the Association for the Blind, Vision Foundation and later Vision Australia. Her work in expanding the options available to blind and vision impaired Victorians triggered the push for similar conditions inter-state, and she was a pioneer force in challenging perceptions of both the sighted and less-sighted communities.

Inscriptions & Markings

Matilda (Tilly) Aston 1873-1947 Founder of the Association for the Blind Generously donated by Malcolm & Beverley Daubney September 1997

Image

Vision Australia,

Col. photograph of Carols by Candlelight stage.

Historical information

Twilight descends as the crowds light up the Sidney Myer Music Bowl as the Carols by Candlelight performance begins.

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x col. photograph

Historical information

The last day for Mrs Kathleen Reynolds, Director of Nursing at Kelaston Nursing home.

Object - Lavender braille writer

Vision Australia,

Beige coloured plastic rectangle object with covering box

Historical information

Designed by Raymond Lavender, American Printing House for the Blind, it was produced between 1962-1982. A modernized Braille writer, the Lavender allowed the paper to exit through the cover in a way similar to a typewriter. The keys are rectangular and the design is compact with no protruding parts. The cover, which is an integral part of the design, snaps on the case. The case and cover are made of Cycolac, a high impact resistant plastic. After the writer was in use for some time, it was discovered that the plastic material tended to warp and production was discontinued. (Information from the American Printing House for the Blind website). Lavender Braille Writer consisting of an oblong shaped structure made out of a beige coloured metal base with cream coloured keys and a beige coloured hard plastic cover. Braille letters are achieved by punching the various keys. A metallic handle is included.

Object

Vision Australia,

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of Blair Edgar

Historical information

Portrait image of one of the Carols by Candlelight performers. Image used in program.

Inscriptions & Markings

23% Blair Edgar p11

Image

Vision Australia,

Col. negatives and B/W prints of John Cook

Historical information

Portrait images of John Cook and also at his desk in Kooyong

Image

Vision Australia,

Photograph of negatives taken at Carols by Candlelight 1985 performers

Historical information

Images taken of performers at Carols by Candlelight

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x col. photograph

Historical information

A group of workers at Vision Queensland (?) come together for a photo, possibly taken in the late 1990's-early 2000's.

Inscriptions & Markings

Property of Sam McCord - please return 20 Enlarge to 2 col wide

Text - Hire-purchase agreement between Association and J. W. Wilson

Vision Australia,

5 pages

Historical information

This agreement between the Association for Advancement the Blind and J. W. Wilson, Secretary lays out the terms and conditions the hire-purchase of a motor vehicle at 16 pounds per month totalling 1039 pounds. The agreement is Dated 18th November 1953, and is signed and Sealed by members of the General Committee and J. W. Wilson.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of RVIB Carols by Candlelight stage and performers

Historical information

Santa and his helpers, including Humphrey B Bear, share the stage with the orchestra and choir during a Carols by Candlelight performance.

Text - Certificate awarded by the Australian Bicentennial Authority.

Vision Australia,

1 certificate

Historical information

Certificate reads "Awarded to Association for the Arthur Wilkins Northern Suburbs Day Centre. By the Australian Bicentennial Authority which was established to plan and coordinate a nationwide profram of celebrations in 1988 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of permanent European settlement in Australia" Signed by the Executive Director (illegible), dated 2nd July 1987. All text on this certificate is located on the bottom half of the document.

Inscriptions & Markings

The top half is populated by a repeated stylised graphic of a map of Australia, in various shades of green and gold. There is also a gold version of the same logo, labelled with "Endorsed Bicentennial Activity" , situated above the official signatures.

Artwork

Vision Australia,

1 art original in gold frame

Historical information

Framed portrait of Tilly Aston who began the Association for the Advancement of the Blind, a forerunner to the Association for the Blind. It is part of a series of paintings commissioned by the AFB Board to commemorate the work of past presidents of the organisation. Tilly sits with one hand resting against a table, and the other in her lap. She is wearing a black collared dress with a white lace neck ruff held with an opal pin. Two medals (the Jubilee medal and Coronation medal) are pinned to the chest, each consisting of a red and white bowtie with a brass medallion. Tilly Aston was born in Carisbrook, Victoria, in 1873. When she was very young her parents noticed she was having problems with her vision. They took her to a doctor who diagnosed her with no sight in her right eye and the prognosis of loss of vision in the left eye. As a result of this she was totally blind by the age of 7. Despite this her parents endeavoured to give Tilly as many of life’s advantages that their limited means could supply. From an early age she was taught singing, music, poetry, arithmetic, encouraged to read and observe the natural world around her and be independent. At the age of 8 she was sent to the Asylum and School for the Blind (later called the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind). She excelled in a wide range of subjects and matriculated in 1889. With the help of a public fund was able to attend Melbourne University, being the first blind Australian to do so. Unfortunately the lack of Braille text books made it impossible for Tilly to continue her studies and she left in second year. Tilly was determined that other blind people would not have the same negative experience she had had. In 1894 she organised a meeting to form the Victorian Association of Braille Writers with the aim of producing and supplying Braille to blind Victorians. Braille was produced by trained volunteers with ? recruited in the first six month. Other rights and services for blind people remained very limited. In 1895 Tilly organised a meeting, which formed the Association for the Advancement of the Blind (now Vision Australia). The Association was instrumental in obtaining many benefits for blind people including a blind pension, voting rights and transport concessions. It also established the first nursing homes for blind people, at a time when many blind people were homeless and destitute. Tilly went on to be Australia’s first blind teacher. She was also a very talented musician, author of seven books and was very gifted at arts and crafts. She knew Esperanto and corresponded with people all around the world including Helen Keller. Tilly passed away on November 1st 1947. Her legacy continues through the work Vision Australia which provides services for thousands of blind Australians. A memorial bell dedicated to her is also situated in the King Domain Gardens.

Inscriptions & Markings

The plaque at the base of the painting reads 'Miss Matilda (Tilly) A. Aston / President 1904, 1910, 1933 to 1947/ Association for Advancement of the Blind'.

Image

Vision Australia,

Text

Vision Australia,

1 brown envelope, 4 pages of handwritten letter and 2 typed page transcript of handwritten letter

Historical information

Letter to the Association for the Advancement of the Blind from Mrs Emma I Parkins (of 1498 Malvern Road, Glen Iris) suggesting a way to raise funds.

Text

Vision Australia,

2 typewritten pages

Historical information

Unsigned letter from a trustee of the club house and sports ground regarding possible resignation as a trustee due to health reasons, and the advice he received upon the Trust's continuity. The Trust was registered under the Successory Trust Act and would continue despite change of individual trustees. Mr Paterson's right to appoint his replacement is touched upon, as is the limited role that the trustees play. Any changes to the Trust Deed would require an application to the Courts and the approval of the Attorney General, and might instead be the subject of challenges from various sections of the community.

Text - Laura Clarke Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

4 minute books --- 2 statement of accounts books --- 3 treasurers books --- 2 members lists (1998, 1999) --- notes for the Turkey and Champagne luncheon --- 1 stamp --- 4 receipt books --- 2 Champagne and Turkey Luncheon tickets

Historical information

The Laura Clarke Auxiliary formed at the Mirridong Home in 1968 and was wound up on November 22, 2001. This collection of papers includes the minute books from 1972 to 2001 and a list of members was maintained at the front of the minute books as well as two individual lists have been retained.

Text - Royal Blind Society of NSW Council meeting minutes: 28/7/1997 - 18/12/2001

Vision Australia,

1 volume

Historical information

These minutes contain information on attendees, meeting chairs, apologies, matters arising out of minutes, correspondence, subscriptions, donations and general business. Reports are also included from Reports for Honorary Treasurer, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Council Committee, Information Services, Corporate Services, Accommodation Services, Rehabilitation, Marketing, Administration Support and Personnel. 25/8/1997 The President read a letter from the CEO, Mr. J. M. Isaacs formally advising of his resignation to take into effect from 31 December 1997. 24/11/1997 The President reported that Mr. John Landau was to be appointed to the position of CEO. 8/7/1997 The CEO advised the telephone based daily new service using interactive voice response technology developed by RBS was launched. 10/8/1997 it was reported the Queensland Talking Book Service (QTBS) was launched. 21/3/2000 The CEO reported that Ms. Jane Evans had been appointed as General Manager of the National Information Library Service (NILS). 18/4/2000 The CEO reported that one of the reasons for the creation of NILS was to combine the resources of RVIB and RBS to ensure an economical and smooth transition of both collections. 12/11/2001 The CEO reported that a meeting was held to discuss the merger of NILS and Vision Australia Foundation.

Object - RVIB badge

Vision Australia,

1 metal pin

Historical information

Badges were created to identify staff members. These consisted of a oval with a gold lighthouse on a blue background and the words 'For the Blind' in gold across the middle of the lighthouse . Around the outside, 'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind' was written in gold against a navy blue background.

Inscriptions & Markings

'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind'

Object - RVIB Voluntary helper

Vision Australia,

Metal pin

Historical information

To signify the various positions within the organisation to the sighted community, an assortment of badges were created identifying individuals and the roles they played. These consist of a rectangle with the position written in gold writing on a pale blue background and 'RVIB' written vertically in gold against a blue background to the side of the badge. People volunteering their time were called 'Voluntary Helper'

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x newspaper article

Historical information

Ballarat Courier (?) article on knitted donations for Chernobyl children from residents at the Kelaston Nursing Home and Day Centre.

Object - Vision Australia's Carols by Candlelight matches

Vision Australia,

2 box of green headed matches

Historical information

Rectangular box of matches sold at Carols by Candlelight. On one side are three small images of a white flame against a circular purple background, with two red and one green flame hearths, and the words 'vision australia's carols by candlelight presented by MYER'. On the reverse side is white lettering on a green background with the words 'To donate call 1300 84 74 66 Proceeds from this event go to Vision Australia." Underneath this on a white background is the Channel 9 logo and 'telecast partner' in purple lettering.

Inscriptions & Markings

Vision Australia's Carols by Candelight presented by Myer

Object

Vision Australia,

Object

Vision Australia,

Image

Vision Australia,

Col. photographs of the 1981 Carols by Candlelight performance

Historical information

Performers and spectators at the 1981 Carols by Candlelight performance.

Inscriptions & Markings

81004-N, 81002-F, 81008-K, 81002-J, 81004-J, 81008-B, 81003-J

Image

Vision Australia,

Text - RVIB Hawthorn Auxiliary papers

Vision Australia,

Index cards--various loose papers and letters

Historical information

The Hawthorn RVIB Auxiliary formed on March 11, 1930. This small collection contains index cards which were maintained by RVIB and contain the amount of donations made by the Auxiliary between 1976-1995, as well as the presentations delivered by RVIB employees to Auxiliary meetings between 1978-1990. Correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1990-2003. It also includes a brief history of the Auxiliary.

Text - [Various letters on White Cane Day 1990]

Vision Australia,

6 pages

Historical information

Various letters of acknowledgement and support for White Cane Day in 1990, written by then Queensland Premier Wayne Goss, Australian Prime Minster Bob Hawke, Brisbane Lord Mayor Sallyanne Atkinson, Queensland White Cane Committee and a Media News release from RVIB,

Text - Thank you certificate to Vision Australia Foundation's Essendon Centre volunteers and day program members

Vision Australia,

1 cream sheet with grey and black writing

Historical information

Celebrating the International Year of the Volunteer, Vision Australia Foundation wished to acknowledge the volunteers and day program members who inputted ideas into the design of the centre's banner. Special thanks to the following for their contribution to the stitching, painting, tapestry, applique and embroidery: Margit Arends, Alice Austin, Judith Edwards, Pamela Harris, Shirley Reid, Margaret Isaacs, Gwenda Johnson, Helen Malone, Catherine Newton and Mary Tams.

Image

Vision Australia,

10 B/W photographs

Historical information

In 1980, the original week long session of planned activities to celebrate White Cane Day was jettisoned for displays and presentations in the new City Square. These included films, Swish demonstrations, children’s tactile artwork and photographs. It was a lovely sunny day, with crowds enjoying a performance by the Victorian Police Brass Band and their well known equine Gendarme, as well as the Lightfooters square dancing. The Minister of Health, Bill Borthwick, officially opened the program of activities.

Text

Vision Australia,

Text - Vision Australia's Carols by Candlelight souvenir program (2005-2017)

Vision Australia,

40 pages, illustrations

Historical information

In 2005, Carols by Candlelight concerts began to be hosted by Vision Australia - an amalgamation of three state based agencies (RVIB, RBS and VAF). From 2005-2008, Ray Martin was the host, with Lisa Wilkinson and Karl Stefanovic taking over the role from 2009 onwards. These Carols programs contain the Christmas songs, photos of the performers and advertisers wishing Christmas cheer and support for this iconic event.

Text

Vision Australia,

Text - 1995 TDK Australian Audio Book Award

Vision Australia,

1 x A3 sheet

Historical information

To encourage the development of audio books, a series of awards were established by the National Library of Australia in 1988, and sponsored by TDK from 1991 until their demise in 2000. Open to both commercial and non-commercial publishers, it aimed to recognise the quality achievements by individuals and publishing houses and to promote the inclusion of audio books into the mainstream market. In 1995 the winner of the Unabridged Non-Fiction Category was "Goodbye Girlie" by Louis Braille Books.

Inscriptions & Markings

Image of 3 Painted Parrots by William T Cooper between header and recipient

Object - Small Braille slate

Vision Australia,

1 metal Braille frame

Historical information

Designed to create an impression on paper, the slate allows users to create Braille by guiding the stylus into the correct alignment to produce Braille, through the applied use of pressure that creates a depression on one size of the paper and a raised dot on the alternative side. In this example, the frame has two hinges which allow it to sit over the paper edge, and a single line of Braille could be written.

Text - Association for the Advancement of the Blind monthly meeting minutes from 18/9/1942 to 16/7/1948

Vision Australia,

1 paper register

Historical information

Minutes of the quarterly meetings of the AAB Committee held at the Kooyong Club House. Minutes contain matters discussed from correspondence and via individual committee members. These include amending the Constitution so that any board or staff member of any other blind institution shall not be eligible to be elected or appointed as a Trustee (p.20), a response to the Blind Persons Society Security Bill (p.42) and incorporation of the Association under the Charities Act (p.85).