The Washtenaw Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled

Welcome to the Washtenaw Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled @ AADL!

In Washtenaw County this free service administered by the Ann Arbor District Library, loans books, magazines, and videos in alternative formats (digital cartridge, digital download, large print, Braille, and descriptive video) to individuals of all ages who are certified as unable to read or use standard printed materials as a result of temporary or permanent visual or physical limitations. A talking book machine and materials are mailed at no cost as Free Matter for the Blind. For more information on how to apply, click here.

In addition to mailed materials, all eligible individuals also have access to downloading tens-of-thousands of books and dozens of magazines from the National Library Service's Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) site. An application for access to BARD is required and available through the NLS website.

The WLBPD collection is housed in the Downtown AADL location at 343 South Fifth Avenue in Ann Arbor at the corner of Fifth Avenue and William Street. For information on all AADL locations and transportation options, visit the AADL Locations & Hours page.

All Washtenaw County residents who are eligible for WLBPD service, as well as those living in the same household, are also eligible for Ann Arbor District Library borrowing privileges.

WLBPD is part of the National Library Service (NLS) network. Click here to locate other NLS libraries in Michigan or in other states.

WLBPD Blog

VISIONS 2014 Vendor Fair: What's New In Technology And Services for the Blind And Visually Impaired

Wednesday May 14, 2014: 10:00 am to 3:00 pm -- Washtenaw Community College - Morris Lawrence Building

This 2014 VISIONS Vendor Fair is presented by the Ann Arbor District Library (which also serves as the Washtenaw Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled) and is cosponsored by the State of Michigan's Bureau of Services for Blind Persons and Washtenaw Community College.

A variety of Michigan exhibitors will demonstrate the latest products and services for the blind and visually impaired. Electronic readers, magnifiers, support services for the blind, Braille devices, library services, CCTVs, leader dogs, and transportation services are just a few of the many outstanding services and products that will be on display.

Presentations will also be offered each hour:

11:00 AM - Don Olson, National Library Service For The Blind And Physically Handicapped;
12:00 PM - AADL Library Director Josie Parker will present service highlights from Washtenaw Library For The Blind@AADL services, now in its 5th year ;
1:00 PM - The A T Guys - What's New In Assistive Technology?;
2:00 PM - Sherry H. Day, O.D., FAAO and Ashley Howson M.S., OTR/L of the U-M Kellogg Eye Center

There is no admission charge and ample free parking is available. Four hundred people attended the 2012 Visions Vendor Fair and this year's fair, featuring presentations addressing national and regional issues, promises to be even more eventful.

Child In A Strange Country Exhibit Reception

Friday May 2, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm -- Downtown Library - 3rd Floor

Join us for the official opening of AADL’s special exhibit Child in a Strange Country: Helen Keller and the History of Education for People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired, a new traveling exhibit from the Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind, which explores the human ingenuity expressed by generations of teachers and students. The exhibit will be on display in the lobby of the Downtown Library lobby and on the Third Floor from Friday, May 2 – Wednesday, June 25.

This exhibit opening reception will include:
• A welcome by AADL Library Director Josie Parker ( who will also note that the Washtenaw Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled celebrates its 5th anniversary at AADL this year);
• Remarks by Micheal A. Hudson, Director of the Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind;
• Music by harpist Deborah Gabrion;
• Elegant refreshments.

The exhibit is designed to be fully accessible. Each section includes six panels mounted with tactile reproductions or touchable examples of real artifacts. Each concludes with a sit-down touch table with interactive games and activities which spur the sensory imagination. Labels are available in large-print, braille, and audio versions recorded in the APH studios on Frankfort Avenue.

Please join us for this opening celebration of this extraordinary exhibit.

Survey for Parents on their Educational Perspectives

The Professional Development and Research Institute on Blindness at Louisiana Tech University invites you to participate in a study to evaluate the services and to understand the educational experiences of blind and/or visually impaired youth in grades K through 12. Your feedback will improve policies and practices that prepare teachers in the future. Participation in this study allows us to gain a much richer and robust understanding of factors that impact service options and academic performance of blind and/or visually impaired youth.
For a parent or guardian to participate in this study, your child must meet the following criteria.
• Be between the ages of 5-22 and be enrolled in a school in the United States in grades K through 12
• Visual impairment must be listed as his or her primary diagnosed disability on his or her Individualized Education Plan (IEP);
• English is his or her primary spoken language;
Participation in this study is voluntary and you may quit the survey at any time. We appreciate your participation in this research.

Support for Adults with ADHD

Are you or a loved one affected with Adult Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder? If so, you may be interested in joining a local discussion group for information or support. This group meets from 7:00 to 8:30 pm at the WISD Teaching and Learning Center each month. The next meeting is Tuesday, February 18th from 7:00-8:30 pm. The meeting will include resources, an opportunity to share experiences and ideas. The following week, February 25, the group hosts speaker Sally Palaian, Ph.D with a talk titled: "Shame Free Money Management for Individuals with AD/HD". For more information contact: AnnArborADDults@gmail.com.

Assistive Technology at AADL

Adults and children with visual or cognitive disabilities can have easy access to information and entertainment through several types of Assistive Technology at Ann Arbor District Library.

From hand-held magnifiers, to text-to-speech software, to Braille printing, AADL has an assortment of accessible technology available during all regular library hours. Not sure how to use this type of technology? Also available, is walk-in training with an experienced instructor! Walk-in assistive technology training is available, at no charge, Tuesdays, 1-6 pm and Wednesdays, 9:30am-2:30pm, in the Assistive Technology Lab on the 2nd floor of the Downtown Library. Call 734-327-4224 for more information, or email wlbpd@aadl.org.

Interested in new technology? Mark your calendars for: "VISIONS 2014: What’s New in Technology for the Blind & Visually Impaired.” VISIONS will take place on Wednesday, May 14, at Washtenaw Community College, Morris Lawrence Building.

Large Print Materials-Easier on the Eyes

Perhaps you've realized that your eye sight isn't what it used to be. You don't need to give up reading, if that's the case, because AADL has a Large Print collection that can be mailed to eligible patrons as Free Matter for the Blind.

If large print is still difficult to read, you may want to consider submitting an application to the Washtenaw Library for the Blind & Physically Disabled. AADL administers the WLBPD to all eligible Washtenaw County residents. This program provides Digital Books and a Digital Player at no cost.

WLBPD Holiday Books

Washtenaw Library for the Blind & Physically Disabled patrons can browse the Michigan Braille & Talking Book Library (BTBL) or National Library Service online catalogs to find a good selection of Christmas mysteries, romances, cookbooks, or holiday stories for young people. Titles like "The Cat Who Came for Christmas" (DB26048/BR7225) or "It's Kwanzaa Time!" (DB42923) are available, as well as books about Hanukkah.

You can do a Word in Title search for a holiday using the online catalogs or call 734-327-4224, and a reader adviser will be happy to order them for you.

WLBPD Produced Series on Digital Cartridge

WLBPD@AADL is excited to offer a new service to our patrons - book series on digital cartridge! Now instead of waiting for the next book in a series to arrive in the mail, just use the bookshelf feature on the digital talking book machine to move on to the next book right away. There are currently 20 different series available for checkout as part of the book series on digital cartridge service. To find out which titles are available, to suggest a series be added, or to order one of the currently available series on digital cartridge, call 734-327-4224 or email wlbpd@aadl.org.

Drop Off Your Old Eyeglasses!

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Do you have eyeglasses that you no longer use or need? The Ann Arbor (Host) Lions Club has over 30 drop-off locations throughout Washtenaw County. Lions Club International collects an average of 4.5 millions pairs of glasses per year to send to developing countries. You can also donate prescription or regular sunglasses too. For information on how AADL serves those with low or no vision, check out the Washtenaw Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled @ AADL!

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