Braille Literacy Campaign

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How many children in America are not taught to read? The answer is 90 percent if the children are blind. Most Americans are shocked to hear this statistic. And we should be. The blind read and write using Braille, so why is our educational system failing to teach Braille to so many children? Why are these children being denied the opportunities that come with a proper education? What if you could not read and write? Where would you be today?

There are three primary reasons for this educational crisis: (1) there are not enough Braille teachers; (2) some teachers of blind children have not received enough training; and (3) many educators do not think Braille instruction is even necessary.

To bring critically-needed attention to this educational crisis, the United States Congress authorized the minting of the 2009 Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar with a portion of the sale of each coin going toward a revolutionary and comprehensive Braille literacy campaign.

Learning to read and write is fundamental to education, which in turn is paramount to full and equal participation in American society. This coin, the first U.S. coin to have proper tactile Braille, symbolizes independence, opportunity, and the potential of blind people to make significant contributions to society when they learn to read and write using Braille. To learn more, read our report The Braille Literacy Crisis in America, or watch our video Making Change with a Dollar.

Please purchase this unique and beautiful coin now and help solve this educational crisis for blind children in America.

The law authorizing this 2009 silver dollar requires that any coins not sold by midnight on December 31, 2009, be melted down. Time is of the essence----a 90 percent illiteracy rate is not acceptable and the opportunity to purchase this coin will soon be gone.

Be part of the solution, give the gift of literacy, and create new opportunities. Please buy the Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar now.

For more information, contact:
Patricia A. Maurer
Director of Reference
Jacobus tenBroek Library
Jernigan Institute
NATIONAL FEDERATION OF THE BLIND
1800 Johnson Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21230
(410) 659-9314, extension 2272
E-mail: communityrelations@nfb.org