You’re reading this column, but do you know how lucky you are? You can read!
We don’t always appreciate the everyday miracle that allows an author’s words to reach our brains.
Your eyes capture the image, your nerves send it on to the brain, where your cerebral cortex translates words into meaning. A breakdown any step along the way and — you can’t read.
It’s easy to forget that many people aren’t able to enjoy reading, due to a print disability. They may have a vision problem; perhaps they can’t hold or manipulate a book; or maybe they suffer from one of a number of disabilities related to learning or comprehension.
Non-print alternatives like audiobooks or Braille aren’t new, but until recently only 10% of materials published in Canada were available in these formats. And the wait could be years for a new title to be released in an audio version.
The Gibsons Library is working to change all that, thanks to our recent enrolment with the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) and the National Network of Equitable Library Service (NNELS). Together these services feature Canada’s largest alternative format collection, and provide over 200,000 items including books, magazines and children’s picture books in audio, e-text and braille.
To access any of these items, print-impaired persons need only identify themselves as such at the Gibsons Library. Staff will help them authorize a Self-Declaration form (reserving the Library’s right to obtain verification from a competent authority). Then we can download e-audiobooks to their mobile device or supply them with CDs for their DAISY player (a digital talking book standard player) if they own one.
Stu Young is the library’s Technical Assistant. Stu is responsible for keeping our library computers running smoothly, updating our website, writing our newsletter brining books in from other libraries and helping all our members find the perfect read!
Library Winter Hours are here, which means the library is now also open on Sundays from 12:30 – 4:30pm. For information on any of our programs or services please telephone the library or visit our website or Facebook page. 604-886-2130 / gibsons.bclibrary.ca