Weekly half-hour program, Mondays at 5:00 p.m. and Sundays at 12:30 p.m. on WXXI Reachout Radio

Enabled is a weekly program designed to help you be confident in saying “I can!”  The program takes a deep look into services, products and issues affecting people with vision loss. Topics are broad in scope, covering such things as adaptive technology; preferred language; election rights; audio description; vision loss & art history; visual hallucinations; the latest information & research on eye disease and even daily living products that can make your life easier.

Ways to Connect

Enabled #1751: Timely Tidbits Part 3, 12/11/17

Dec 11, 2017

Timely Tidbits, a collection of articles on a variety of subjects, will be coming your way once again with Part 3. You'll hear about a new website from the Association for Macular Diseases, about a new electronic mobility wristband, about your vision as you age and about Jennifer Anniston's involvement in an advertising campaign for those with itchy, gritty, dry eyes and blurry vision.


Timely Tidbits, a collection of articles on a variety of subjects, will be coming your way again this week with part 2. You'll hear about an affordable tablet for the blind as well as the Argus II or "bionic eye" as it's called. You'll also journey back into history to find out about Laura Bridgeman.

Enabled #1749: Timely Tidbits Part 1, 11/27/17

Nov 27, 2017

Timely Tidbits, a collection of articles on a variety of subjects, will be coming your way for three weeks. This week, in part 1, you'll hear about a blind surfer, retinal imaging tests, a guide dog named Nadine and about Touch Tours in Philadelphia.

Enabled #1748: Eye Cancer Part II, 11/20/17

Nov 20, 2017
The Myeloma Crowd

The discussion of eye cancer will continue on this program. The main topic will be the available treatments for eye cancer and the possible side effects. You'll also hear a little bit about clinical trials.

Enabled #1747: Eye Cancer Part 1, 11/13/17

Nov 13, 2017
Speciality Medical Dialogues

Cancer, and specifically eye cancer, is a disease that is not easily understood. To help with that, this program will start with the basics of eye anatomy and then move on to cover risk factors, signs and symptoms of the disease, how it is diagnosed and the stages and grading of eye cancer.

Today you will meet some real interesting characters, and they all have some kind of vision problem. You'll find these characters in books, television, cartoons and even in comics.

Enabled host Nancy Zimmer on AMI's Studio 5

Nov 2, 2017

Throughout the U.S. there are nearly 100 audio information or radio reading services that provide access to print content, as we do here at WXXI Reachout Radio.  In Canada, there is a national media company that provides similar services on a national level on multiple media platforms.  It is called Accessible Media, Inc. or AMI for short.

Several of WXXI Reachout Radio's programs are broadcast throughout Canada via AMI-audio, including Enabled, which is hosted by volunteer Nancy Zimmer.  Recently AMI contacted Nancy to be a guest on their Studio 5 interview program hosted by Mike Ross and Joeita Gupta. Nancy spoke to them via telephone from her home in Rochester, talking about how she got started reading for Reachout Radio, how her program started, and what's on the horizon for her continued work.  AMI shared this audio with us for you to enjoy.

In this program you'll hear exciting news about the progress being made toward FDA approval for gene therapy in a specific retinal disease, Leber Congenital Amaurosis. You'll also hear news from the field of stem cell research for glaucoma.

Consider this program to be a postcard that says, "Having a Wonderful Time! Thinking of You!" Chirping crosswalks, talking elevators, a hotel with disorienting carpet are vision-related things that are described in this program. Also, news articles will be shared that introduce a Canadian MP, a skateboarder and a hockey fan who are all legally blind. 



The term "blind justice" refers to the hoped-for ideal of an impartial justice system. In this program you will meet two lawyers who are blind and who are potentially living up to the goal of providing "blind justice."

In this program, you will hear about a simple and effective eye examination method used in Africa, a man from Ireland who is meeting multiple challenges in his life, an Australian program for runners, and a Brazilian surfer.

In this week's program we will journey to China, and you will meet a young man named Cai Cong. He is breaking stereotypes and attempting to re-form public opinion about people who are disabled in his country.

Cataract surgery is a miracle for anyone - restoring sight where there was darkness. In this program you will hear about an organization that is performing that miracle in some of the most remote areas of the world, the Himalayan Mountains of Nepal.

A great deal of information is actually presented in this series of short quizzes about blindness, vision and eye health. See how you do as you test your knowledge.

In this program you will hear about the many people who make up the team in your eye doctor's office: patient service representatives, ophthalmic assistants, ophthalmic technicians and technologists, surgical assistants and even scribes. You’ll also be reminded of the difference between opticians, optometrists and ophthalmologists.

This week's program will feature a transcript of the TED talk of Chris Downey, an architect who is blind. Then you'll be part of a question and answer session with this very talented man who specializes in Universal Design.

This is the second of two programs bringing you information about research and advocacy organizations of interest to people who are blind or visually impaired. Today you'll hear about Prevent Blindness, Research to Prevent Blindness, Glaucoma Research Foundation, Cornea Research Foundation and the National Eye Institute.


This is the first of two programs bringing you information about research and advocacy organizations of interest to people who are blind or visually impaired. Today you'll hear about the Foundation Fighting Blindness, the National Federation of the Blind, the American Foundation for the Blind and the American Council of the Blind. 

The Chicago Lighthouse compiles articles about blindness and vision problems from a variety of sources. This program will share some of those articles with you. Topics include tandem bike riders, jailhouse Braillers, AMD drops and a flying eye hospital.

An eclipse traveling from the American NW across the country to the SE will happen on August 21. This program will tell you all about it.

Safety will be stressed but you'll also hear about fun activities planned at places within the path of totality, where daylight will turn to darkness.

If you are really busy, sometimes all you need is to just simplify your live and make things a little easier for yourself. This program will do that for you by giving you some "life hacks," tips to make your life more efficient.

We will be venturing into the world of fame and fortune. In this program you'll hear about several celebrities that have eye or vision problems that you might be able to relate to.

Host of Enabled shares her story

Jul 12, 2017

Nancy Zimmer, host of Enabled, recently submitted her story to BlindNewWorld. Read about Nancy and her long-time service and commitment to people with vision loss and her passion for sharing information with her listeners. Way to go Nancy!!

It is very difficult for people with vision loss to use a flat touchscreen to adjust their home appliances. This program has some ideas to help adapt to the new touchscreens.

If you can't see well, perhaps one of the exciting sensory substitution devices can help you. You could try using your sense of touch or your hearing to get the same information. This program will tell you about some of the new SSD's coming your way.

Sometimes an article just doesn't fit into the time restraints of this program, but it's too good to toss out. This week's program will use a few of those articles to bring you information about a white cane debate, a feisty lady, a book review and phone numbers for help with your electronic devices. Delightful and delicious leftovers!

Three different topics will be explored in this program: it could be called a triumvirate of topics. You'll hear about transportation suggestions, biomarkers for glaucoma and summer camps for kids.

Have you heard of Uber? This week's program will tell you about the experiences of two Uber users who are blind, one in Atlanta and one in Chicago.

Variety is the spice of life, or so they say. This week's program will bring you a variety of topics that will include politics, a horse, some wine and even beer, all with a visual connection, of course.

A blind new world is happening right now, and it is a world of inclusion. In this program, you will hear details about this movement; it's actually called Blind New World and it's sponsored by the Perkins School for the Blind.