Accessibility November 14, 2019
Improving Lives Foundation’s unique project will make nonacademic books accessible for visually impaired children
Books are like good friends that provide company, solace and entertain the readers. Books can transport the readers to a different world of wonder, amazement and imagination without taking a single step. For children with visual impairments, access to books is limited and Omniactive’s ‘ILF-Improving Lives Foundation’ is aiming to bridge the gap through its audiobook project-#OmniReads.
Visually impaired children can access books in Braille or listen to audiobooks. Improving Lives Foundation is working on an ambitious project to ensure that visually impaired children get access to books that are not just for academics but for recreation as well.
Most school related books are available in accessible format, while there are very few non-school books that the blind children in the age group of 5-18 years are able to enjoy.
Fairytales, stories about folk lore, short stories, novels, mystery stories, adventure books, there are millions of exciting books that children across the world enjoy reading.
ILF is aiming to make such entertaining books accessible for visually impaired children by converting them into audiobooks.
Rushva Parihar heads the OmniActive Improving Lives Foundation and believes that every child has the right to accessible books.
We are very hopeful of making a difference in the lives of visually impaired children through the books that are normally available only to sighted children. The audiobooks will surely bring joy to children who listen to them and we are hoping to record books of various genres that might appeal to them. Our volunteers are working hard on making this project a success.
For this amazing project, Improving Lives Foundation has taken feedback from various sources and is currently working on a list of around 100 popular children’s books that have been selected for the first phase of recording.
Unlike books for grownups, children’s books tend to have a smaller word count and take less time to be recorded. It still takes around 2-3 hours for a single book to be recorded in the accessible format. Newz Hook spoke to volunteers who are lending their voices for the project.
Arpita Tamhankar is contributing her voice and time to the audiobooks project and says, “I am thrilled to use my voice for a noble cause. Visually impaired children will be able to access the many books that are currently not in their reach and it is extremely fulfilling to be a part of their happiness.
The books will initially be available in English language and will later be recorded in regional languages as well to reach bigger audience across the country.
Once the books are recorded, they will be shared with audiobook libraries, book banks, even schools and colleges where children can listen to them. The audiobooks will be shared free of cost by ILF.
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