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A child learns to read Braille with her grandfather, and Dr. Marc Maurer sits on the floor with blind children while telling them a story.

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A young girl sits at a table and reads a Braille book.Last year, our Free Braille Books program provided more than 45,000 Braille books to blind children and classrooms across the country. Please help us continue to promote literacy and reach even more blind children. Make a contribution today.

American Action Fund Named a Winner in 2019 Literacy Awards

On August 29, 2019, the Library of Congress announced winners of the 2019 Literacy Awards. Among the top three honored was the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults.

 

Badge that says, "Literacy Awards, Library of Congress, 2019 Winner, American Prize"The Literacy Awards, originated in 2013, honor organizations doing exemplary, innovative, and replicable work. They spotlight the need for communities worldwide to unite in working for universal literacy.

 

Read the press release on the 2019 Literacy Awards.

 

Watch the video of the award ceremony which took place August 30 at the National Book Festival Gala.

 

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States — and extensive materials from around the world — both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. 

American Action Fund's 100th Anniversary

A celebration was held at the 2019 National Federation of the Blind's National Convention to honor the one hundredth anniversary of the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults.

 

Visit https://actionfund.org/celebrating100years to find out more.

 

Founded in 1919, our organization continues to help blind and deaf-blind persons gain independence and confidence through our programs, scholarships, and parternerships.

Pedro and the Octopus

The Action Fund has commissioned Debbie Stein and Ann Cunningham to create a tactile Twin Vision® book for young readers. The result is Pedro and the Octopus, a book about a young boy's trip to the beach. It is written in print and Braille and has colorful, tactile pictures. To find out more, go to https://actionfund.org/pedroandtheoctopus or call 410-659-9315.

Here's Hank!

The American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults and the National Braille Press are partnering to produce the Here's Hank series of books written by Henry Winkler and Lin Oliver for the 2019 Free Braille Books Program. Find the press release here.

New Share Braille Website Up and Running!

The American Action Fund has now launched the new Share Braille website. This website enables people all over the country to exchange Braille books with those who have books they would like to give, with folks who are looking for Braille books to keep.

 

We are continually looking for ways to increase literacy in blind children, teens, and adults. By finding homes for Braille books that may have otherwise been discarded, it encourages blind people to read more, build their own personal libraries, and gives them access to information they may not have known existed.

 

You can search for books that are available, share books, or request books for yourself. You do not need to give a book to receive a book.

 

The Action Fund will be putting over 20,000 Braille and print/Braille books from the Kenneth Jernigan Library onto the Share Braille site in the next coming months.

 

We are excited for this new piece of the American Action Fund's program lineup. Try it out for yourself at www.sharebraille.org. If you have questions, you can email [email protected].

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Kenneth Jernigan Scholarship

The Kenneth Jernigan Scholarship is given annually to a legally blind student who exemplifies the fruits of Dr. Jernigan's teachings. The Kenneth Jernigan Scholarship is valued at $12,000. Dr. Jernigan changed perceptions regarding the capabilities of the blind in this country and around the world. 

 

Applications for this scholarship are available for five months, from November 1 to March 31 of the following year. In order to more effectively reach potential applicants, this funding is offered as one of many available scholarships in the National Federation of the Blind's scholarship program, however the Kenneth Jernigan Scholarship is funded entirely by the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults. To obtain an application and read the directions to apply for the $12,000 Kenneth Jernigan Scholarship, go to www.nfb.org/scholarships after November 1.

 

The winner of the 2019 Kenneth Jernigan Scholarship is Ms. Emily Eagle of Keller, Texas, who is studying Political Science and Theology at the University of Notre Dame.

 

Emily said in brief remarks when she won the scholarship, that she hoped to express her gratitude by contributing to the organization throughout the rest of her life.

Give the Gift of Braille

Every year the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults provides, free of charge, over 10,000 Braille calendars to blind and deaf-blind persons throughout the United States. These pocket calendars are an invaluable tool for everyday use. They provide the day, date, and the major holidays during each month.

 

This calendar allows blind people to receive the same information their sighted family, friends, and colleagues have easy access to. This is especially true for deaf-blind folks as their only access to written communication is through Braille.

 

One business professional says, “While I use accessible technology each day in my job, I find tremendous value in having a calendar that I can access directly while conducting conference calls or meetings. I also use it for planning my business and personal trips. This calendar is quick and easy to use!”

 

Another user of the calendar remarks, “The calendar is small enough to carry in my bag or purse. It is arranged in a way that makes it very easy to check the date or day of the week. It is very handy to have on my desk when I am talking to people on the telephone and it is very well made.”

 

If you would like to receive the 2020 Braille calendar or know someone who would like to have one, they are available by emailing [email protected] or by faxing a request to 410-659-2340.

 

And, If you would like to make sure a deaf-blind or blind person is able to continue to receive this Braille calendar, please consider making a $10.00 donation by donating online or calling us at 410-659-9315 and donating using your credit card.

 

You can also print and mail our donation form to the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults, 1800 Johnson Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21230.

Free Braille Books Program

This program provides blind children a free Braille book every month from a popular children's reading series. The books are for the children to keep and collect for as long as they want them. In the past seventeen years over two hundred ninety titles from popular children's reading series were distributed to thousands of blind children. Each year the American Action Fund breaks new ground by offering fresh and interesting titles and series that are sometimes overlooked in the Braille community.

 

To enroll in this program and to find out more, please go to https://actionfund.org/free-braille-books.