That All May Read: Halifax Central Library hosts exhibit that explores the history of blind literacy in Canada

10/4/2017

(HALIFAX, NS – Oct. 2, 2017) Ever wonder how people who are blind or partially sighted learn to read and write braille? Or how people with vision loss look at pictures? Or do math when they cannot see?

You'll discover all that, plus lots of other fascinating tidbits about the history of blind literacy in Canada, at Halifax Central Library from Oct. 3 to 16, as part of CNIB's That All May Read exhibit.

The exhibit features tools for introducing braille to first-time learners, tactile drawings, tools people with vision loss use when doing math, an activity where children can learn how to braille their name – and much more.

"The display includes access to a new website thatallmayread.ca, which allows people to explore the evolution of reading for Canadians who are blind – from the earliest beginnings of tactile reading codes in Canada to the digital books we know today," says CNIB's volunteer archivist Jane Beaumont, who spent many months researching the history of blind literacy in Canada to create the website.

"It's filled with hundreds of items from our 100 years of archives, including artifacts, photographs, audio recordings and personal stories and testimonials contributed by Canadians who are blind."

As part of the display, Halifax Public Libraries is showing a sampling of the more than 500,000 titles that people with print disabilities can access through the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) – simply by being a member of Halifax Public Libraries.

“We are all better off when access to information is varied and plentiful,” says Debbie Lebel, Director of Access at Halifax Public Libraries. “When we can take part in a popular book club because we can borrow a CELA title, or can finish a big student project quickly with CELA’s access to research materials in alternate formats, we have more chances to flourish. The Library is committed to opening connections for our community members, and we are proud to have a place in CNIB’s anniversary exhibit.” 

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