Thanks to generous private donations as well as grants from both the Times
Colonist Literacy Foundation and the Government of Canada’s
New Horizons for Seniors Program, Braille Literacy
Canada is able to supply braille starter kits to more than
30 adult braille learners in Canada.
The starter kits contain useful items to support adult braille
learners on their braille learning journey (see below). These kits will
remain available as long as supplies last.
In order to receive a braille starter kit, you must:
- Be blind, deafblind or have low vision; and
- Be located somewhere in Canada
- Be an adult or older adult who is learning braille, or who learned braille at some point in adulthood
Applications will be reviewed on an individual basis,
and kits will be provided as long as funding lasts. Participants of our
Braille Zoomers virtual peer-support program for adult braille learners will be given
priority, but any adult braille learner in Canada is welcome to apply!
Note that these kits are not available to sighted individuals who are learning braille,
or to lifelong braille users. However, these items can be purchased through specialized
vendors, including Future Aids, the
CNIB Store, and National Braille Press.
Below is a description and photograph of each of the items that are included in a Zoomers Starter Kit.
Just Enough to Know Better
(by National Braille Press
) is a one-volume book in print and braille with exercises to identify the braille alphabet, numbers, and contractions. It is intended for use by sighted family and friends, but can also be used by adult braille learners. It includes flashcards and a wall cheat-sheet of braille contractions.
UEB Symbols List: This dandy booklet has a list of the most commonly used braille symbols in Unified English Braille, including mathematical signs, punctuation, currency and much more. It is produced in braille with large print.
BrailleBox (with 12 wooden pegs): A sturdy wooden box used to create 2 large braille characters with moveable wooden pegs. A great way to practice braille dot placement.
Braille eraser with brailler paper: A handy wooden eraser, used to flatten braille dots and a sheaf of 8.5" x 11" braille paper
Braille flashcards: A fun way to learn braille, this set of over 100 cards, is produced with embossed braille and embossed print. Test your skills and practice letter, number, and word recognition.
Deck of braille playing cards: Regular sized playing cards with braille, stored in snap-shut plastic box.
Dymo® Braille Labeller: Handheld labeller with braille and print guide used to produce braille on Dymo® tape. A useful tool for labelling household items.
Jumbo slate and stylus: This metal slate provides 4 lines of 18 cells of jumbo braille. It comes with a stylus.
Slate and stylus: A classic! This standard metal slate provides for 4 lines, of 28 universal sized braille. It comes with a stylus and it is sturdy and portable.