Programs & Services

Braille Zoomers - Starter Kits

Photograph of all of the items in a complete Braille Zoomers Kit (described in more detail below)

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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.

Kit Contents

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.
Super Short Stories in Uncontracted braille (by National Braille Press): These 10 super-short stories from SmokeLong Quarterly and Every Day Fiction offer material in uncontracted English braille that is interesting enough for adults to want to read through to the end!
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.