Braille Matters International Extravaganza from the Braille Revival League, Thursday 4 January at 6:00 PM GMT

Come One, Come All and join the Braille Revival League for a seven-hour birthday party celebration for Louis Braille which we are calling Braille Matters!! There will be lots of presentations, lots of prizes, lots of opportunities for everyone to participate and no reason for you not to be there.

Braille is the means of communication that enables people who are blind to be competitive in the world of work, to be creative, to play games, to mark and label, and so much more!

Our organization is concerned that there is not enough excitement about braille and we want to change that! We want to get everyone excited about what braille can do and look ahead to what the Braille Revival League can do to make braille more and more valued and relevant.

Millions of blind people around the world believe that braille matters, and so do we. The Braille Revival League and its six state affiliates invite you to join us as we celebrate the genius of Louis Braille and learn why blind users and organizations like the Braille Authority of North America, the National Library Service, Clovernook Printinghouse for the Blind, the National Braille Press, Horizons for the Blind, and the Braillists Foundation in the United Kingdom say that braille matters now more than ever.

We will talk about the work we are going to do trying to get braille labels on products. We will talk about the support we offer to the National Library Service as they launch braille e-readers and braille on demand. we will talk with agencies across the country who teach braille or produce it. We will explore approaches that are making braille exciting to children in school. We will hear from our state affiliates about what is going on in states where there are chapters of the Braille Revival League.

Our hope is that this event, occurring on the birthday of Louis Braille, will become an annual happening. We will be able each year to use this day to celebrate what we have done over the preceding year to make braille better known and more available.

We will be broadcasting the daylong event on Zoom, ACB Community, in Clubhouse, and on ACB Media. Come and help us make this day a huge success!!

Click here to join at 6:00 PM on 4 January, no registration required

Full Agenda

All times are shown in Eastern Standard Time (GMT−05:00).

  • 1:00 PM: Welcome to Our Celebration: Denise Colley, Braille Revival League President
  • 1:05 PM: Congratulatory Remarks: Deb Cook Lewis, American Council of the Blind (ACB) President
  • 1:10 PM: What’s Current With Braille and What Does the Future Hold: Jen Goulden, Chair, Braille Authority of North America (BANA)
  • 1:25 PM: News From the Jenny Beck (Pennsylvania) BRL Chapter: Tony McCloskey, President, Jenny Beck Chapter
  • 1:35 PM: The Braillists Foundation; Who we Are and News From The UK: Matthew Horspool, General Manager, The Braillists Foundation; Frank Welte, BRL Board Member and President, BRL of California
  • 1:55 PM: Acknowledgement of Braille Revival League Life Members and Announcement of the 3rd Place Winner of our Why Braille Matters Contest: Jane Carona, BRL Treasurer and Membership Committee Chair
  • 2:10 PM: Vacaville Volunteers Blind Project, Teaching incarcerated inmates the trade of Braille Transcription and Brailler Repair: Claudia Romero, Program Director, Volunteers of Vacaville Blind Project, California Medical Facility, Vacaville, California
  • 2:35 PM: News From Our West Coast BRL Affiliate: Frank Welte, President, Braille Revival League of California
  • 2:45 PM: Clovernook Braille Printing House, The past, the present, and looking to the future: Samuel Foulkes, Director of Braille Production and Accessible Innovation, Clovernook Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired
  • 3:10 PM: National Braille Press, How Various Programs Demonstrate the importance of Braille: Brian MacDonald, President, National Braille Press
  • 3:35 PM: How the Sun Shines On Our BRL Florida Affiliate: Elizabeth Bowden, President, Braille Revival League of Florida
  • 3:45 PM: The Variety of Braille Formats at NLS: Tamara Rorie, Head of the Patron Engagement Section, National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled (NLS)
  • 4:10 PM: Announcement of the 2nd Place Winner of our Why Braille Matters Contest: Jane Carona, BRL Treasurer and Membership Committee Chair
  • 4:15 PM: The Importance of Braille in the Great State of Illinois: Albert Anderson, President, Braille Revival League of Illinois
  • 4:25 PM: Horizons for the Blind, A Variety of Braille Services: Katrina Teas, Braille Production-Proofer, Horizons for the Blind
  • 4:50 PM: The Braille Challenge, Inspiring our young people using Braille: Rachel Antoine, Director, National Programs and Youth Services, The Braille Institute, Los Angeles, California
  • 5:15 PM: Grade 3 Braille, Advanced Braille Knowledge: Nancy Shipman, Facilitator of the Grade Three Braille Revisited Weekly ACB Community Call
  • 5:20 PM: Digital and Electronic Braille: Nicki Keck, Facilitator of the Learning Braille Digitally Bi-Weekly ACB Community Call
  • 5:30 PM: Dream Vision Group, Braille Notetakers, Embossers, etc.: Mike Tindell, Assistive Technology Specialist, Dream Vision Group
  • 5:55 PM: Braille Together, Let’s have fun Using Braille: Dorlyn Catron, Facilitator of The Braille Room ACB Community call. A braillewriter and piece of braille paper are required for this session
  • 6:15 PM: What’s Exciting in the Lonestar Affiliate: Neva Fairchild, President, Braille Revival League of Texas
  • 6:25 PM BRL: Who We Are and What We are Doing, along with the Announcement of the 1st Place Winner of our Why Braille Matters Contest: Denise Colley, BRL President; Ralph Smitherman, BRL Secretary and Public Relations Chair; Jane Carona, BRL Treasurer and Membership Committee Chair; Paul Edwards, Immediate Past President and Publications Committee Chair; Patty Slaby, Board Member and Outreach Committee Chair
  • 6:50 PM: Some Final Remarks: Dan Spoone, American Council of the Blind Interim Executive Director
  • 6:55 PM: Closing Remarks: Denise Colley, Braille Revival League President
  • 7:00 PM: Braille Revival League of New York, Wrap-Up, award, and surprises: Audrey Shading, President Braille Revival League of New York and members of the New York Affiliate