[nfb-talk] National Federation of the Blind Partners with Santa to Promote Braille Literacy

Freeh, Jessica JFreeh at nfb.org
Mon Nov 16 16:36:34 CST 2009


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE



CONTACT:

Chris Danielsen

Director of Public Relations

National Federation of the Blind

(410) 659-9314, extension 2330

(410) 262-1281 (Cell)

<mailto:cdanielsen at nfb.org>cdanielsen at nfb.org



National Federation of the Blind
Partners with Santa to Promote Braille Literacy



Baltimore, Maryland (November 16, 2009):  Once 
again, Santa has enlisted the help of the elves 
at the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) 
Jernigan Institute to get Braille letters out to 
hundreds of blind boys and girls this Christmas season.



Dr. Marc Maurer, President of the National 
Federation of the Blind, said: “Santa approached 
the National Federation of the Blind a couple of 
years ago and asked us to be his helpers.  I’m 
quite fond of the fellow and was delighted that 
we could assist him in his work.  Braille 
literacy is the key to success and opportunity 
for the blind, but unfortunately too few blind 
children are learning it today.  This program 
will not only be jolly good fun but will also 
serve an important educational purpose, as blind 
children will be able to practice reading Braille 
as they enjoy their letter from Saint Nicholas.”



Between November 16 and December 20, parents can 
go online at www.nfb.org and fill out a Santa 
Braille Letter request form.  The form can also 
be printed and faxed to (410) 
659-6893.  Beginning December 1, the Braille 
letters from Santa will start going out to boys 
and girls around the country.  The Braille letter 
will also be accompanied by a print copy (for mom 
and dad to read), and parents can choose the 
contracted or uncontracted form of Braille for 
the letter.  Requests for letters must include 
the writer’s name, the child’s name, birthday, 
gender, mailing address, and a telephone number 
or e-mail address in case Santa’s helpers at the 
National Federation of the Blind have questions.



The Braille letters from Santa program is part of 
the National Federation of the Blind’s national 
Braille literacy campaign, the largest ever 
undertaken in United States history.  Congress 
authorized the minting in 2009 of 400,000 Louis 
Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollars to mark the 
two-hundredth anniversary of the birth of Louis 
Braille (1809–1852) and to support the efforts of 
the National Federation of the Blind to promote 
literacy among blind Americans.  This unique and 
beautiful commemorative coin is the first U.S. 
currency to feature tactile, readable Braille.



A portion of the proceeds from sales of the 2009 
Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar  will be 
used to support the NFB’s “Braille Readers are 
Leaders” campaign, a national initiative created 
to double the number of blind children learning 
Braille by 2015, improve certification standards 
for teachers of Braille, and conduct innovative 
programs to support Braille literacy.



The deadline for letter requests is December 20, 
to ensure that a return letter in Braille is 
received before Christmas.  For more information 
about this and other programs of the National 
Federation of the Blind, please visit our Web 
site at <http://www.nfb.org/>www.nfb.org.  Those 
interested in ordering a 2009 Louis Braille 
Bicentennial Silver Dollar or the new Braille 
Education Set, which features the coin in a 
collectible folder designed to highlight the life 
and legacy of Louis Braille, should visit 
<http://www.braille.org./>www.braille.org or 
<http://www.usmint.gov/>www.usmint.gov or call 
1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468).  The Louis Braille 
Bicentennial Silver Dollar and the Braille 
Education Set will only be available until December 11, 2009.





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About the National Federation of the Blind

With more than 50,000 members, the National 
Federation of the Blind is the largest and most 
influential membership organization of blind 
people in the United States.  The NFB improves 
blind people’s lives through advocacy, education, 
research, technology, and programs encouraging 
independence and self-confidence.  It is the 
leading force in the blindness field today and 
the voice of the nation's blind.  In January 2004 
the NFB opened the National Federation of the 
Blind Jernigan Institute, the first research and 
training center in the United States for the 
blind led by the blind.  Please visit our Web 
site: <http://www.nfb.org/>www.nfb.org.




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