NATRC - Nevada Assistive Technology Resource Center

The NATRC is a statewide project of the Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities (NCED), at the University of Nevada, Reno. As part of the Nevada Assistive Technology Collaborative the NATRC offers a variety of services and supports to anyone interested in exploring the world of assistive technology.

Assistive technology (AT) is any item, piece of equipment, software program, or product system that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of persons with disabilities. It might help with speaking, writing, hearing, remembering, learning, walking and mobility, driving, and many other activities of daily living.

  • AT can be low-tech: communication boards made of cardboard or fuzzy felt OR pencil with foam attached to grip it OR a cord tied to the doorknob to close the door easier.
  • AT can be high-tech: special-purpose computers OR programed electronics OR a smart phone or tablet.
  • AT can be mobility devices: wheelchairs either powered or self-propelled, walker, cane, prosthetics.
  • mounting systems, and seating and positioning devices.
  • AT can be computer hardware: special switches, keyboards, and pointing devices.
  • AT can be computer software: screen readers and communication programs.
  • AT can be inclusive or specialized learning materials and curriculum aids.
  • AT can be much more:  home modifications, home automation, vehicle modification, ramps, and much more.

Services Include

  • Information and Assistance-resources, and basic information to people with disabilities, agencies, service providers, and the general public. Conversations about assistive technology exploration begin with this.
  • Device demonstration-offers a comparison of options in order to make informed decisions.
  • Device Loan-assists with decision making, or to serve as a loaner while the consumer is waiting for device repair or funding. To provide an accommodation on a short-term basis for a time-limited event. For training self-education or other personnel development activities. This is a short-term arrangement generally up to 14 days or longer if necessary.
  • Training-classes, workshops, and presentations that have a goal of increasing skills, knowledge, and competency, as opposed to training intended only to increase general awareness of AT. 
  • Technical Assistance (to programs and agencies) needs assessment, program planning or development, curriculum or materials development, administrative or management consultation, program evaluation and site reviews of external organizations, and policy development.
  • Public Awareness-activities are designed to reach large numbers of people, including activities such as public service announcements, radio talk shows and news reports, newspaper stories and columns, newsletters, brochures, public forums and social media.
  • Transition services (specific to training and technical assistance) supports and options of how assistive technology may help with education, community living, housing, aging, and other independent living transitions that occur throughout the lifespan.

What to Expect

The Nevada Assistive Technology Resource Center (NATRC) and the rest of our Nevada Assistive Technology Collaborative (NATC) is here to help. We believe that meaningful interactions begin with an engagement process whereby you as the person with a disability are the consumer and are the most important person in the discussion, and we are here to guide you along the path.

Many folks who contact us might be looking for a specific solution and that’s fine.  Ideally and before we can get to that point its often best to have a conversation about your needs and what you are trying to accomplish. What is your Goal?  You are the expert and are in control of the process so we really rely on you to explain your situation and from there we begin to understand how we can help and how AT can actually help you reach those goals. Without this type of process, we have seen many examples of inappropriate referrals and device recommendations, as well as the potential of device abandonment because it doesn’t work for the individual. We want to avoid these pitfalls.

Navigating the system sometimes can be frustrating. But please, start with us. You will find that there are knowledgeable people working within our collaborative, and many are people with disabilities themselves who are users of assistive technology. And it is always nice, as you know, to talk to someone who also shares similar barriers and can discuss things from a functional standpoint. Regardless, we will always make an attempt to connect you to knowledgeable individuals who are best positioned to communicate your options.

If you would like more information about our project or would like to discuss how we could work together to support your AT interests and needs, please contact us.

Due to COVID-19 we are working remotely for the most part. You may need to leave a message or an email and we will get back to you usually within 24 hours.  Messages are checked regularly. And parts of our programs that usually are done face to face, with home visits, or other types of direct contact have been modified.  

Important information:  Recent changes to AT in our state involves the transition of the program in Southern Nevada. The NATRC is now providing services in Clark, Esmeralda, Nye, and Lincoln counties, with an office opening in Las Vegas soon. We are very excited to be able to offer services and supports in Southern Nevada, but do to COVID-19 and other delays, we are not fully up and running now. People can still contact us, and we will do our best to provide seamless services no matter where you are in the State.

Nevada Assistive Technology Resource Center:

Statewide
 Program Contact:  (775) 682-9070

Toll Free (in Nevada only):  (800) 216-7988

natrc@unr.edu

Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities

Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities 

University of Nevada, Reno

 1664 N. Virginia Street,

Mail Stop 285

Reno, Nevada 89557

Scott Youngs, Project Manager

(775) 682-9056

syoungs@unr.edu

The NATRC is housed at the Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities (NCED), located in the William Raggio Building (Building # 080) on the campus of the University of Reno. The NATRC offices are on the fourth floor, Room WRB 4090. (Note: Offices will be opening in Las Vegas soon.)