As every librarian knows, outreach is not only an essential library activity but one of the most difficult to effectively accomplish. We here at the Connecticut Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped have a particularly difficult time in reaching all of our prospective patrons. According to the American Foundation for the Blind, the estimated number of individuals with visual impairments in Connecticut is over 64,000. Unfortunately, we have only about 7,500 patrons active in our service. These visually impaired and disabled individuals are often isolated from the community mainstream and must rely on friends and family for information.
This is one aspect of our total outreach program where public, academic and school libraries, can be of assistance. We offer a no-cost program of loaning to libraries a sample of our digital playback equipment and digital books along with informational handouts and applications. Your library can then put these items on display so that friends and family of visually impaired persons could see them when they go to your library. Hopefully, they would then inquire about our program and sign up their friend or family member.
With your cooperation, we hope to spread the word that visually and physically impaired individuals can have access to a whole new world of books and magazines unavailable to them in print format. The Connecticut Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped has 30,000+ titles of general reading material, much the same as a public library, in both audio and braille formats. The service is sponsored by the Library of Congress, National Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped at no cost to the patron. Equipment and books are loaned to the patron and delivered by the U.S. Postal System as Free Matter for the Blind. As an added benefit to you, an equipment display also reflects your library’s commitment to serve the blind and physically impaired community.
To sign up for our free equipment demonstration program, complete the Request for LBPH Demonstration Equipment application form, and send it to:
Connecticut Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped
198 West Street
Rocky Hill, CT 06067
We greatly appreciate your help in reaching out to our prospective patrons.