Breaking Down Barriers: Addressing the Stigma Surrounding Braille
There are several reasons why braille adoption is low:
- Lack of awareness: Many people are not aware of the benefits of braille or do not know how to access braille materials. This can lead to a lack of interest or motivation to learn braille.
- Availability of alternative technologies: With the rise of digital and voice recognition technologies, many people with visual impairments are relying on these technologies instead of braille. While these technologies can be helpful, they do not provide the same level of literacy and independence as braille.
- Cost: Braille materials, such as books and embossers, can be expensive. This can make it difficult for individuals and institutions to invest in braille technology.
- Time and effort: Learning braille can be a time-consuming and challenging process, requiring regular practice and dedication. For some people, this can be a significant barrier to adopting braille.
- Negative attitudes towards braille: Some people with visual impairments may have negative attitudes towards braille due to negative experiences in the past or misconceptions about its usefulness. This can discourage them from pursuing braille literacy.
To address these issues and increase braille adoption, there needs to be greater awareness about the benefits of braille, improved access to braille materials, and efforts to make braille more affordable and accessible. Additionally, providing support and resources to individuals and institutions interested in adopting braille can help make the process easier and more manageable.
We conduct braille challenges to promote braille usage in the visually impaired community. For many, after the challenge, the Hable One has become a vital tool in their toolkit. One user said; “It has evolved my learning of the Grade 1 Braille Code and truly given me the ability to quickly transform my thoughts into textual output, in a way that had not previously been possible. So my writings have really taken off.” Now she adds to our community mailing lists very regularly! With her story, we could see our mission of ensuring that people with visual impairments stay connected come true in real time.