Braille Newsletter

Free Braille Newsletter in Telugu for Visually Challenged Community

This project is in pilot phase. The ground work has been completed. We plan to start this programme on Diwali day (26th October) symbolizing that this Newsletter is going to brighten their lives and keep their burning desire to shine in life alive. Diwali to Ugadi is the pilot phase. We will take a decision on future course of action based on the evaluation of the progress during the pilot phase.

Proposed Launch: 26th October, 2011

TMAD Braille Newsletter concept is about the new method of delivery of information aimed at the transformation of visually challenged community. This is an aim to fill the gaps in the existing system and among the various stakeholders.


Braille Newsletter in Telugu is a unique concept, though it is not a new initiative.   For VCs, this would be published in Telugu Braille and distributed for free in all govt. blind colleges and hostels in AP. For general public, it would be published in Telugu on our Web site.  Wherever applicable, English content also will be posted.


The regular features include: Success Stories, Govt. Schemes, Employment Opportunities, Matrimonial Column, Quiz, RTI, RTE, Health Tips, Wish list, Entrepreneurship/Livelihood Case Studies


Braille and the Walking Stick are the eyes for the visually challenged.  We want to encourage the Braille Literacy not just in visually challenged community but also in general public. This is aimed at sensitizing general public towards the problems of visually challenged and to motivate them to extend their support.


For visually challenged, this would act as a platform to exhibit their talent, to share their knowledge and express their concerns. For groups working for them, this would act as a tool to share information about their NGO, services they offer, the various govt. schemes and vacancies available for them, new innovations and inventions in their world etc.


This is a means to converge the visually challenged community with different groups and individuals interested to work for them.

 

Need/Challenge to take up this Project:

  • No specific media is available with an exclusive focus on VC community.

  • No platform is available for general public to meet visually challenged, to understand their life, to offer support and recognition they deserve for their talent.

  • Visually challenged are heavily dependent on general public for recording of audio books and it involves cost to purchase CD players.

 

  • Heavy reliance on audio books keep the VC community remain illiterates in Braille.

 

  • There is a huge gap among the evolved and successful individuals and the struggling aspirants in their community

 

  • There are many groups working for visually challenged but work within their confines.

 

Benefits/Impact Areas:

1.   This newsletter is a platform which aims to unite Visually challenged people irrespective of their affiliations to different groups and forums.

There is National Federation for Blind (NFB), different homes/schools set up by NGOs, various activities carried out by other groups in addition to govt. programmes. There is no common communication channel among them. Everyone operates in their own circles and there is hardly an effort to work collectively on a consistent basis.


The more number of people the newsletter reaches, more number of groups would come forward to share about their updates and offer suggestions and be a part of the process.


2.  Society in general will be sensitized towards the visually challenged community and come forward to show their solidarity and provide them with opportunities to stand on their own.


If anyone wants to help, they normally look for any orphan homes or oldage homes but never try to consider visually challenged and other differently abled (except MRs).


Though this community is active, there is a huge gap between them and the general public. Through our Newsletter (which would be posted in Telugu/English on our Web site to be read by general public), we want to bridge this gap. We will be publishing the wish list of visually challenged on our Web site (not in Braille Newsletter) so that whoever is interested can help these people.


Wish fulfillment can be as small as showing a movie to a VC person to providing employment to a graduate to organizing a sports event (cricket, chess) to hosting a musical night.


3. This is a win-win option for all stakeholders – visually challenged, general public, NGOs and government.


This is an effort to establish harmony among the stakeholders instead of an unhealthy competition or complaints with mud slinging.


• Govt. can know about their problems through Newsletter and also share updates about vacancies and training programmes.
• NGOs can provide updates about their activities, visually challenged can share their talent and express their concerns.
• The general public can provide them empathy.


Even without the newsletter all these activities take place but Newsletter gives the efforts a proper channel and provides a larger view. It completes and complements the circle comprising the stakeholders.

 

Project Progress:

Over the next three years, we hope the following positive impact be made.

 

A. The project can be an inspiration to NGOs in other states to come up with Braille in vernacular languages.


B. Consistent efforts would be made for eradicating Braille Illiteracy among the visually challenged.


C. Govt. blind schools and colleges will be established in backward districts of AP.


D. Regular sports and cultural events would be organized by the govt. and corporates for Visually Challenged.


E. Job Fairs would be conducted in a timely manner and more vacancies will be available for  and reach the Visually Challenged.


F. Marriage Fairs (Swayamvarams) would help visually challenged to find their life partners.


G. Tie-ups with hospitals for guiding the new parents of babies born with visual disability.


Barriers/Obstacles:


A. Funding to reach all the visually challenged


B. Making it financially viable


C. Lack of support from popular media to this initiative


D. Lack of sponsors for the planned sports and cultural events/job fairs and marriage fairs


E. Lack of awareness and understanding or any communication gap from visually challenged that Braille is more important than audio books.


F. Pre-conceived notions in the society about visually challenged and vice versa

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