Skip to main content

Abstract Details for VR Counselor Huddles: Providing VR Services Remotely

In April and May 2020, the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) conducted five virtual “counselor huddles” with 106 VR counselors from 11 state VR agencies to discuss how they are adapting to working remotely during the time of COVID-19 with an objective to 1. Provide VR counselors the opportunity to learn from each other, sharing strategies, methods, and tips that are helping them fulfill their professional responsibilities in this new environment. 2. Learn about the areas of need VR counselors have identified for providing services to their clients and for themselves professionally. 3. Identify things that ICI could provide to VR counselors to support and help them function optimally during this pandemic. As this health crisis eventually ends, and the need for social distancing is reduced, there will remain key lessons learned through the COVID-19 experience. These lessons can, and likely will, shape the future of how VR services are delivered to its dual customers: individuals with disabilities and businesses. ICI provides a big-picture overview of what counselors shared. Other briefs in the series go into more detail about specific topics related to service provision during the pandemic: - Providing Job Search Assistance Remotely - Accessing Virtual Mental Health Services Remotely - Providing Counseling and Guidance Remotely - Providing Transition Services Remotely - Agencies for the Blind Providing Services Remotely Participating State VR Agencies included: Arizona Vocational Rehabilitation, Maine Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, Massachusetts Commission for the Blind, Michigan Services for the Blind, Minnesota Rehabilitation Services, Nebraska Vocational Rehabilitation, New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired, New Hampshire Vocational Rehabilitation, Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services, Oregon Commission for the Blind, Washington Services for the Blind.