Within the greater Wichita area (to begin with) the Braille Mobile will distribute children's books to schools, learning centers, libraries, hospitals, and homeschooled blind students. The books will maintain all text, color, and illustrations, in braille and tactile graphics where appropriate, at NO Charge!
Perhaps now it will include important medical health information, and resource information for people in our community in need of safety.
As the Covid 19 Pandemic spreads across America, many of the most vulnerable are without important information readily accessible to their sighted peers. Without helping, such would be the plight of our State’s citizens who are blind and deaf/blind.
Imagine facing COVID-19 in this age of social distancing unable to clearly see or hear.
For tens of thousands of deaf-blind Americans, who have severe hearing and sight impairment, the scope of the outbreak and its new normal have posed unique challenges to daily life.
For those who are blind or deaf/blind in their way of communicating and their culture, everything relies on touch, now they’re not allowed to touch, and now they have to practice social distancing.
Deaf-blind Americans survive by touch: hand-over-hand signing to communicate; fingers scanning braille public signs for mobility; hugs and handshakes to feel connected. While not everyone experiences complete darkness and total silence, advocates say touch is critical -- and now comes with significant risk of contagion.
The requirement to stay 6 feet away from other people is actually not safe for a person who is blind. A blind person needs to touch his/her guide.
In an effort to do our part, KBTI immediately made Coronavirus safety guidelines accessible in Braille to every County Health Department in the State of Kansas. The importance of making such information equally accessible in Braille is not something to be taken lightly.
As an organization committed by mission to enrich the lives of people who are blind deaf/blind, KBTI is taking steps to keep them safe, supported and informed during the COVID-19 outbreak.
An increasing risk of violence during the Covid-19 pandemic
Following a brief meeting with Kansas Governor, Laura Kelly, KBTI moved quickly into action and began transcribing important printed information into Braille in both English and Spanish pertaining to Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence.
The blind and deaf/ blind community throughout the State of Kansas would now have equal access to the help they needed. From the specific location in the State’s 105 counties, to contact numbers, local, regional, and national.
A Blind or Deaf-Blind woman trying to leave an abusive relationship faces unique barriers.
Information travels quickly within a Blind or Deaf-Blind community, compromising confidentiality and the victim’s safety.
Police and shelters are often not skilled at communicating with the Blind or Deaf-Blind and often don’t have interpreters.
Four million women are physically abused each year by their partners. 500,000 are Deaf, Deaf-Blind or Hard of Hearing.
31% of American women report being physically or sexually abused at some point in their lifetime. 6,000,000 are Deaf, Deaf-Blind or Hard of Hearing.
Our Institute remains committed to being there for our blind, deaf/ blind and visually impaired communities. KBTI remains committed to stepping up when such services are needed.
If you are reading this, and you are acquainted with someone whom you believe would benefit from the information mentioned herein, in Braille, or Large Print, let us know.
Whether you are in Kansas, California, or New York, we want to hear from you as well. The point here is, regardless of where you are if someone you know is blind or deaf/blind and needs help, contact us. If we cannot help you, we will do our best to direct you to someone who can.
Donate at this page, or contact us.
Your support helps give the gift of literacy to a child who is blind.