About the Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center
The Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center (CCRC) within the DARS Division for Blind Services is a comprehensive vocational rehabilitation training facility working in partnership with consumers to help them achieve their employment and independent living goals. Serving as a residential adult training facility in Austin, CCRC offers comprehensive training in core skills such as orientation and mobility (O&M), Braille, Daily Living Skills/Career Development, technology, Adjustment to Blindness Seminar, and advanced career guidance.
CCRC was named in honor of Judge Criss Cole, who lost his sight while serving as a Marine during World War II. As a member of the Texas House of Representatives from 1955 to 1962 and the Texas Senate from 1963 to 1970, he was instrumental in improving services for all people with disabilities.
The training at CCRC promotes the learning of basic blindness skills non-visually using sleep shades. Using sleep shades encourages consumers to minimize their dependence on vision, overcome the fear of blindness and develop confidence in the blindness skills and in themselves. Following the completion of the Basic Blindness Skills program, and the development of increased confidence; consumers receive additional training on the use of vision, if needed, to optimize the tools available.
CCRC staff work in partnership with field staff to address specific consumer training needs in the Center setting and in the community. Currently through the Community and Outreach Department, the Center offers several community based options for consumers including:
- Mini-training, which provides experiential group activities in the home community designed to build confidence in basic blindness skills;
- Statewide Diabetes Consultant services;
- Statewide O&M Consultant services; and
- Staff Immersion Training, which provides staff intense blindfold experiences in basic blindness skills.
CCRC staff also responds to special requests for training such as group skills trainings and employment focus trainings for consumers and staff.
The dedicated staff of CCRC is committed to providing a positive environment which affords consumers the opportunity to develop the skills, confidence and a positive attitude toward blindness. It is our goal that each consumer we serve be empowered to fully participate in their employment, community and society.
Additional information on the Center can be obtained from Rosanne DeMoss, Center Director; or Andrea Moen, CCRC Admissions Office, at (512) 377-0300.
Staff tours are available by appointment. Contact the CCRC Admissions Office for information and arrangements.
Access to Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center
The Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center is located at 4800 N. Lamar Blvd. in Austin. To reach the Center:
- By Bus: The Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center is served by Capitol Metro bus route #5-Woodrow. Exit the bus on Sunshine Drive at Criss Cole.
- By Car: Going north on Lamar Boulevard, pass 45th Street. Turn left into the circular drive (marked 4800 North Lamar), and proceed to the parking garage. You may park in any unreserved spot in the parking garage, or along Sunshine Drive (directly west of the CCRC building), or in the visitor spaces of the Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center parking lot.