[Nfbmo] Introductory prices going away, Don't miss out!!!

Fred goodfolks at charter.net
Fri Apr 17 20:24:30 UTC 2009

 Introductory prices for the Louis Braille commemorative coin  will go away 
at the completion of business on Sunday April 26. Pricing information is 

The National Federation of the Blind will have Louis Braille coins available 
through the NFB Independence Market as a convenience to members beginning

March 26.  For your information, below are the prices that they will sell 
coins for.

March 26-April 26: $33 uncirculated and $40 proof plus actual shipping costs

After April 26: $34 uncirculated and $42 proof plus actual shipping costs

Independence Market 410 659-9314 Ext. 2216

USA Mint Pricing

Introductory Price

Regular Price

Uncirculated Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar

Introductory price: 31.95

Regular Price: 33.95

The uncirculated Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar will also be 
offered in an easy-to-open

capsule for those who would like to feel the tactile elements offered by the 


Uncirculated Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar in Easy-Open Capsule

Introductory price: 31.95

Regular Price: 33.95

Proof Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar

Introductory price: 37.95

Regular price: 41.95

You can order coins online at the U.S. Mint:


or by phone at: 1-800-USA-MINT (800) 872-6468)

TTY: 1-888-321-MINT (6468)

Outside the 50 United States: 001-202-898-MINT (6468)

Available seven days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 midnight (Eastern 
Daylight Time).

Remember, if you don't order before April 26, the coins will still be 
available, but only until the end of this year. After that they will only be 
available from collectors.

Fred Olver

Missouri Coordinator Louis Braille coin initiative

Email: goodfolks at charter.net

  Braille Readers are Leaders

Braille equips the blind with literacy in the exact same manner that print 
empowers the sighted.  Yet, today fewer than 10 percent of blind children 
are learning Braille. The National Federation of the Blind is introducing 
the "Braille Readers are Leaders" Literacy Campaign to improve Braille 
literacy and double the number of young Braille readers by 2015.

The Braille code, the primary system of reading and writing used by people 
who are blind, is a relatively modern invention that has frequently met with 
opposition.  The code is named after its creator, Louis Braille (1809-1852), 
who developed and published the first manual on his code at the age of 
eighteen.  Blind students enthusiastically took to the Braille code as until 
then the only means of reading independently, was using embossed letters. 
The embossed letters were slow and difficult to use, and no easy way to 
write using this system existed.  Essentially, the embossed letter system 
was invented by fully sighted individuals as a means of helping blind people 
to be normal.  Despite the clear advantages of Braille and the enthusiastic 
support for the system among young blind students, using the code was 
challenged by sighted schoolmasters who viewed it as simply another barrier 
between blind and sighted individuals.  The Braille code was first 
introduced in the United States in 1869 but faced many struggles before its 
adoption as the Standard English Grade Two Braille code, in 1932.

>From that point until the early 1960s, many blind people were routinely 
taught to read and write Braille from an early age.  However, by the 1980s, 
the Braille literacy rate among blind people was reported to be near 10 
percent.  This meant that the vast majority of blind people were 
illiterate-they could not effectively use print or Braille to read and 
write.  A number of causes led to the decline in Braille literacy, 

·        The emphasis, since approximately 1965, on teaching children with 
some remaining vision to read print, to the exclusion of Braille;

·        Negative attitudes toward blind people and the communication skills 
they need;

·        Lack of standardized Braille teaching methods and of quality 
control to ensure high standards of teaching;

·        The misguided notion that technological advances, such as cassette 
tapes, were a viable substitute for Braille;

·        Discouragement of newly blinded adults from learning Braille under 
the false belief that it cannot be mastered after childhood;

·        Not giving older individuals the opportunity to explore how some 
Braille might help them maintain their independence and manage their own 
medications; and

·        Underestimation of and view of Braille as unusual, thus, the blind 
themselves are viewed in a similar fashion.

A Much Needed Shift

Led by the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), a number of initiatives 
were undertaken, beginning in the 1980s, to change the decline in Braille 
literacy.  These included raising public awareness about the benefits of 
Braille and an effort to adopt state laws that strengthened access to 
Braille instruction and instructional materials for blind children.  While 
significant progress was made in the 1990s in changing public policies 
related to Braille and raising awareness of the importance of Braille to the 
blind, the literacy statistics for the blind show that far too few blind 
people have access to quality instruction in Braille.  This is true despite 
the fact that research conducted during this period demonstrates a 
significant relationship between Braille and employment.  That is, better 
than 80 percent of the blind people who are gainfully employed utilize 
Braille in their daily lives.  This is contrasted with an unemployment rate 
among the blind that is often cited to be 70 percent.  Braille, 
independence, confidence, success, and literacy are all tied together.

"Braille Readers are Leaders" Literacy Campaign
The National Federation of the Blind-the oldest and largest organization of 
blind people in the United States-will establish an unprecedented and 
comprehensive initiative in Braille literacy beginning in July 2008 to 
coincide with the unveiling of the design for the Louis Braille 
Commemorative Coin from the United States Treasury in honor of Braille's 
200th birthday.  This initiative will be marked by the most significant 
investment in literacy for the blind ever-raising $8 million for Braille 
literacy programs into the future-and an innovative network of programs that 
dramatically enhance opportunities and education for the blind.

The campaign has aggressive goals:

1.      The number of school-age children reading Braille will double by 

2.      All 50 states will enact legislation requiring special education 
teachers of blind children to obtain and maintain the National Certification 
in Literary Braille by 2015.

3.      Braille resources will be made more available through online sharing 
of materials, enhanced production methods and improved distribution.

4.      The American public will learn that blind people have a right to 
Braille literacy so they can compete and assume a productive role in 

The first phase of the campaign is raising sufficient funds to fund such 
future programs as:

Braille.org: The Superhighway to Literacy

A new website, www.braille.org, will be launched as a clearinghouse "portal" 
to become the premier Internet resource on Braille and educate the public 
about the capabilities of the blind well into the future.

Braille Outreach Projects

Big ideas begin with grassroots innovation.  The NFB includes seven hundred 
local chapters located in each of the fifty states, the District of 
Columbia, and Puerto Rico.  Thousands of blind people come together in these 
local chapters to establish programs in partnership with members of the 
community to improve the integration of the blind into society on terms of 
equality.  A significant focus of the Braille literacy campaign will be 
providing local grants to innovative outreach and education programs around 
the country that have a clear emphasis on Braille.

"That the Blind May Read": An Educational Documentary

The National Federation of the Blind will raise awareness of the 2009 
Braille campaign by helping to produce a one-hour documentary about Braille, 
its history, and the role it plays in empowering the blind all around the 
world.  Never before has an accurate, and in-depth educational look at 
Braille been produced in a multi-media form for a wide audience.

Braille Reading Pals

A Braille reading-readiness program for blind infants, toddlers, 
preschoolers, and older students with reading delays will enhance literacy 
through early exposure to Braille. The program will equip parents with early 
literacy materials and will connect them with resources to support their 
child's literacy development throughout the years such as mentoring from 
other parents of blind children and free Braille books.

"Braille Readers Are Leaders" Contest

A dynamic program encouraging Braille reading at all grade levels (K-12) and 
awarding prizes in a number of categories to students reading significant 
amounts of Braille each year.

"Braille Is Beautiful" Curriculum

An innovative curriculum to teach sighted students how to read and write the 
Braille alphabet code and increase students' sensitivity to and 
understanding of blind persons will be introduced.  This modular curriculum 
will be flexible, with components to serve different age ranges.

Braille Certification Training Program

NFB will undertake an aggressive outreach effort to significantly expand the 
pool of teachers certified in standardized teaching of Braille and 
individuals certified in transcribing and proofreading Braille in all 
Braille codes (literary, math/science, and music).

Braille Research in Literacy

The National Federation of the Blind will help improve Braille- related 
programs by filling gaps in the Braille knowledge base, designing studies to 
evaluate the effectiveness of currently available Braille curricula and 
teaching strategies for blind people of all ages, measuring the blind 
population and Braille readership, and disseminating accurate information 
about Braille- related research.

Braille Technology Development

In the 21st century, literacy requires the integration of and accessibility 
to technologies that facilitate reading, writing, and access to information. 
Tremendous potential exists for stimulating such development and 
incorporating the use of Braille into technologies in order to enhance 
literacy for the blind.  Electronic refreshable Braille displays, dynamic 
tactile pads, new Braille writing technologies, and machines for producing 
tactile graphics are all examples where technology development is required. 
New, low-cost, Braille writing technologies are also needed as the current 
tools have not been significantly improved in decades.  The National 
Federation of the Blind will establish a technology development team made up 
of strategic university, industry, and other supporters to generate new 
Braille-related technologies and bring them to market at an affordable 

As this imaginative campaign develops during 2008 with its focus on 
fundraising, many new opportunities, innovative programs, and great 
partnerships will emerge to further shape the scope of this literacy 
initiative.  The NFB is the leader in Braille education, awareness, and 
advocacy and the literacy campaign will build on that leadership to build 
previously unimagined opportunities.  With imagination and innovation, we 
will build a future full of opportunities with Braille.

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