Support Groups and Programs

Understanding, support, and advice when you need it most

It's not unusual to feel depressed, angry or alone when you experience a loss of vision, and there will probably be times when you wish you had someone to help you work through these feelings. If you're struggling to overcome the emotional challenges of vision loss, we're here for you.

  • Join a CNIB support group and receive emotional support from other people who understand the impact of vision loss on everyday life.

  • Call the toll-free CNIB Contact Centre at 1-800-563-2642 and get immediate, confidential telephone support. Many of our Contact Centre staff are blind or partially sighted themselves, and all are trained to assist you in accessing programs and services to help meet your needs.

  • Join our Vision Mate program and connect with a caring volunteer who's trained to provide assistance.

  • Access counselling services through CNIB or recommended community resources.

  • Learn about opportunities to take part in leisure, recreation and social programs in your community.​

Manitoba Support Groups and Programs

Brandon and Winnipeg

For information on all Brandon and Winnipeg adult groups and programs contact Joanne Fabian at phone: (204) 789-0954 or email: joanne.fabian@cnib.ca unless otherwise stated.

For information on all Winnipeg child or youth groups and programs contact Ann Harry at phone: (204) 789-0944 or email: ann.harry@cnib.ca

Sharing Circle

This program is designed for individuals who are blind or partially sighted to connect with others who are experiencing similar circumstances and to participate in social gatherings.

The monthly Sharing Circle also provides the opportunity for participants to learn from guest speakers about a variety of relevant topics, such as:

  • Innovations in assistive technology

  • Community Financial Planning

  • The Heart and Stroke Foundation

  • Healthy aging

  • Magnifiers and more

  • Public transportation

  • Accessible voting, etc.

Where: CNIB, 1080 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg – Second Floor Boardroom

When: First Wednesday of each month; Group resumes March 7, 2018

Time: 10:00AM – 12:00PM

For more info: Please contact Joanne Fabian at Joanne.Fabian@cnib.ca or (204)789-0954

Adjusting to Vision Loss

This six-week program provides individuals with an inclusive support network, the opportunity to share practical support strategies, and to help to face the future with confidence, independence, happiness, and hope changing what it means to be blind.

The purpose of the program is to provides adults who are blind or partially sighted with support during their adjustment to vision loss; improve their knowledge about eye condition, living with vision loss, and CNIB and community supports and services; develop their confidence and independence skills; and provide opportunities for social participation and peer relatedness.

Where: CNIB, 1080 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg – Second Floor Boardroom

When: Beginning Thursday April 05, and will run for 6 successive weeks

Time: 1:00PM – 3:00PM

For more info: Please contact Joanne Fabian at (204)789-0954 for mandatory registration.

Beyond the Classroom​

Manitoba Youth Council

This program is designed for to provide youth who are blind or partially sighted opportunities to develop leadership, advocacy, and compensatory skills in a social setting with the goal of building self-esteem, confidence, social and community engagement, and self-efficacy (empowerment).

The Youth Leadership Program also provides the opportunity for participants to hear from guest speakers on a variety of topics.

Content of the Youth Leadership Program will be flexible to reflect the interests and developmental levels of the youth who are attending.

Where: CNIB, 1080 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg – Multipurpose Room/1st Floor Boardroom

When: Monthly meetings; TBA

Time: 5:30PM – 8:00PM

For more info: Please contact Ann Harry at ann.harry@cnib.ca or call (204)789-0944. Or try our Winnipeg Info line at (204)789-0961

Teleconference options are available

F.U.N. (Friendship a Universal Need)

This program will ensure blind and partially sighted children (8-12) have access to a variety of social, educational and experimental learning opportunities with their peers.

Possible activities may include:

  • making tactile books

  • cookie decorating

  • rhythm and dance

  • making science fun

Events will run monthly, alternating between Winnipeg and Brandon to include rural, as well as urban opportunities.

Where: CNIB, 1080 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg – Multipurpose Room/1st Floor Boardroom

When: Bi-Monthly; TBA

Time: TBA

For more info: Please contact Ann Harry at ann.harry@cnib.ca or call (204)789-0944

P.L.A.Y. (Planning Life Accommodations 4 Youth)

This program is designed for blind and partially sighted children (13-21 years) that will ensure young people in junior and high school will have access to a variety of social, educational and experiential learning opportunities with their peers. The program will address considerations related to increasing independence and transitioning into adulthood by providing information and support for skill development.

Workshops will be planned during weekends and holidays to accommodate transportation needs for the individuals who have not yet mastered all the skills required for safe independent travel.

Where: TBA

When: TBA

Time: TBA

L.E.A.D.S (Leadership Education Advocacy Development & Support)

Mini workshops for individuals ages 16-21.

Where: CNIB, 1080 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg – Multipurpose Room/1st Floor Boardroom

When: TBA

Time: TBA

For more info: Please contact Ann Harry at ann.harry@cnib.ca or call (204)789-0944

Family Fun Days

As part of our Early Childhood Intervention services, CNIB Winnipeg hosts social events for families who have children aged 0-5 who are blind or partially sighted. These events allow families to make meaningful connections, share experiences, and participate in fun activities!

Activities are based on the interests and needs of the group. The group meets at a CNIB Centre or alternate location to enjoy activities, such as games, crafts, picnics, as well as indoor and outdoor playgrounds.

Where: TBA

When: August 2018: Boonstra Farms Picnic TBA

October 2018: Halloween Party TBA

December 2018: ​Christmas Party TBA

Time: TBA