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Assemblymember Cervantes Honors Blindness Support Services, Inc. as 58th Assembly District Nonprofit of the Year

For immediate release:

(SACRAMENTO) – Assemblymember Sabrina Cervantes (D-Riverside) has selected Riverside-based nonprofit, Blindness Support Services, Inc. as the 58th Assembly District’s 2024 Nonprofit of the Year.

Blindness Support Services (BSS), Inc. is a non-profit organization that, since May 1992, has been providing a variety of resources and programs to the blind and visually impaired residents of Riverside, San Bernardino, Orange, San Diego, and Los Angeles counties. Through its innovative approach, BSS helps individuals who are blind or visually impaired achieve independence and self-reliance. This includes hands-on training in assistive technology; one-one-one instruction in braille formats, including in Spanish; and training for seniors, veterans, and individuals with disabilities on how to access local public transportation.

“It is an honor to celebrate the great work that Blindness Support Services does for blind and visually impaired residents in Riverside County and throughout Southern California,” said Assemblymember Cervantes. “Every individual in our community is worthy of dignity and deserving of the same opportunity to participate in and contribute to society. I am so thankful for the services, training, and support that Blindness Support Services provide to the blind and visually impaired community in our Inland region.”

“Blindness Support Services, Inc. is committed to promoting independence and self-reliance for persons who live with low or no vision residing in Southern California, and is proud of our record of providing programs and services to our community since 1992,” said Pete Benavidez,President & Chief Executive Officer of Blindness Support Services. “We are deeply humbled and grateful for the opportunity to be recognized by Assemblymember Sabrina Cervantes as a Nonprofit of the Year.”

Blindness Support Services has received grants from the California Endowment, the Weingart and PacifiCare Foundations, Rohr Industries, the California Council of the Blind, Bank of America, Allstate, and the Inland Empire Community Foundation. BSS has also administered grants from county and city governments in Southern California. The initiatives supported by these grants include programs addressing barriers that people who live with low or no vision face in accessing adequate healthcare, and building affordable housing in the City of Riverside.

“Nonprofit organizations touch the lives of millions of Californians in ways that can often go unrecognized. From the childcare program to the soccer team, from the art class to the health clinic, and from the community organizer to the animal shelter—nonprofits improve the lives of all Californians and make our communities stronger,” said Geoff Green, CEO of the California Association of Nonprofits (CalNonprofits), the sponsor for this initiative. “Nonprofits are also a key economic driver in our state, accounting for 1 in 14 jobs. It’s important to recognize all they do.”

This is the ninth year of the California Nonprofit of the Year initiative, a state-wide effort honoring the critical role nonprofit organizations play in California. Each year, state legislators choose a nonprofit from their district to be honored throughout the year, including at an annual luncheon at the Capitol in early June. The program is sponsored by CalNonprofits in partnership with the State Senate and Assembly Select Committees on the Nonprofit Sector.

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