The primary goal of the Social Group Health and Activities Program (SGA) is to facilitate independence and enhance socialization skills for older adults with significant and uncorrectable vision loss through the use of arts and crafts, social activities, and health monitoring groups.
This is a therapeutic program of social and health services that individuals in our community are unable to access in other locations due to the fact that Miami Lighthouse is the sole provider in Miami-Dade County offering professional vision rehabilitation along with health related services. Through this program, clients are able to access services to technology, where they can receive private instruction on how to use assistive devices. Support groups and counseling services are provided daily by the Mental Health Counselor. Clients will also have access to the Low Vision store where they can learn about and purchase new adaptive technology to help them enhance their independence. Recreation activities are provided daily by the Therapeutic Recreation Specialist. These activities are designed to increase clients skills and maximize their independence.
Because one-third of SGA participants are diabetic and often this is the reason for vision loss (diabetic retinopathy), a registered dietitian provides one-on-one nutritional counseling. Therapeutic services are provided along with instruction on accessing technology, ESOL and adult basic education and support groups.
Arts and crafts improve fine motor skills like dexterity, necessary for Braille comprehension. Our trained staff uses various art activities such as painting and ceramics to increase creativity, socialization, and self-esteem. Fitness and wellness activities include exercise and field trips to local parks and areas of interest. Music Therapy instruction is provided, which has been proven to alleviate symptoms of depression in the elderly. One in four people with macular degeneration develop clinical depression. Such seniors suffering from age-related vision loss remain isolated in their home, and the SGA Program helps them overcome depression and gives them the opportunity to interact with visually impaired peers in a social environment.
Miami Lighthouse is AER accredited distinguishing that an agency or school operates at the highest level of quality and is positioned to generate the outcomes needed by the clients.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious 2020 award for "Best in Nonprofit" campaign by PRWeek referred to as the "Oscars of the PR industry".
Miami Lighthouse ranks among the elite 1% of U.S. nonprofits having earned 13 consecutive 4-star ratings from Charity Navigator, the nation's premier independent nonprofit evaluator. Receiving such a distinction reflects our sound fiscal management, responsible use of donor dollars, and financial strength.
Early Intervention Blind Babies Program Named the Children's Trust 2016 Program of the Year. This most prestigious award recognizes this Early Intervention Program, in particular, for including parents as teachers.
Miami Lighthouse Learning Center for Children™ is a Florida gold seal and nationally Accredited Professional Preschool Learning Environment (APPLE)
Miami Lighthouse was recognized at the 2015 Florida Blue Foundation Sapphire Awards luncheon as an organization that has demonstrated excellence and innovation in community health.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious 2015 Beacon Award in Education at the 13th Annual Beacon Council Awards.
Miami Lighthouse is a two-time Charity Partner (2013 and 2014) of the Marlins Foundation and a 2017 Major League Baseball All-Star Game Legacy Partner. Our Florida Heiken Children's Vision Program has received over $300,000 in charitable donations through these partnerships.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious 2008 Concern Award from Health Foundation of South Florida.
Miami Lighthouse received a Silver medal at the 2016 Miami Today Gold Medal Awards Ceremony.
Miami Lighthouse named "Best of Miami" Charity 2017 by the New Times.
Miami Lighthouse received United Homecare's 2012 Thelma Gibson Community Service Award at the 18th Annual Claude Pepper Memorial Awards Ceremony.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious South Florida Business Journal 2011 Excellence in Health Care Award in the Community Outreach category.
Miami Lighthouse honored by being named the recipient of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce 2010 Non-Profit Business Diamond Award.