One hundred and fifty countries have signed the ratification implemented in the year 2008 at The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, where visually impaired and otherwise affected individuals have the right to stand on equal terms with others. Braille is increasingly showing up in these and many other countries enabling blind citizens to roam around anywhere and everywhere without any step-backs.

Public places and surrounding areas have improved their tools and physically present objects with aids for the disabled. Braille especially is available and present now in several places such as restaurants, menus, elevators, forms, etc. Such aids give the blind support when they don’t have any other option except reading and interpreting and help them save themselves from frauds.

A person cannot confidently and independently wander in the society without knowing Braille. This learning gives them the power of literacy and communication in a way. Digital options, listening, and speech response/feedback are not enough to replace Braille because a visually impaired citizen cannot just rely on these options because they are accurate for every circumstance. In contrast, Braille works like the language of the eye for these people.

The fundamental need to read and write is no different for the blind as others. They too cannot replace literacy for any digital or auditory alternative. Studies have often shown that voice synthesizers as modes of teaching do not bring about equivalent results as compared to Braille learning. The latter provides one with opportunities of enjoying their student life and also achieve well academically.

With such an achievement comes high self-esteem and low rates of depression among the disabled. They do not feel helpless and hurt because of their unfortunate problems, they instead feel empowered and this gap is bridged quite sensibly. Braille too can become a way of reaching the same heights in learning and performing as the other kids in the society.

Some everyday examples where a visually impaired person can effectively use Braille are- taking down messages from the phone, taking notes in classes, making shopping lists, maintaining index files for all purposes, keeping recipes, crochet or knitting patterns, instructing or teaching other impaired individuals about Braille, etc. Basically, every advantage of reading and writing is achieved through Braille as well. It might, however, need more patience and motivation, but desperation and need to achieve can enable anyone to study Braille. The need for more Braille teachers and volunteers will however always remain a drawback and necessity.

Some additional reasons why learning Braille can still be useful for people are-

  • Braille enables an individual to become literate and thus graduate which can lead to a successful career as well.
  • It educates people about the fundamental of grammar such as punctuation, sentence structures, words, letters, morphemes, spellings, etc. This is extremely important for a learner to advance in reading and writing.
  • Braille provides with a better foundation of knowledge which helps in using any advanced technologies if one is looking for employment. One can grasp other concepts faster as well, erasing the stigma of impaired and their non-abilities.
  • Any reading materials such as books can be transcribed into Braille. Hence, one doesn’t only have to depend upon ‘audiobooks’, especially because reading is an art that is mostly irreplaceable and so is the feeling of the touch of a book. Therefore, every Braille learner can convert and read novels.
  • Blind people do not have to worry about secrecy and privacy matters because they can freely express their thoughts on paper through Braille and not worry about others reading it and they can also label their belongings which gives them a sense of freedom, privacy and belonging.

Therefore, Braille is extremely important even in today’s digital or tech-savvy life. The significance of tangible things is unbelievable and therefore nobody can take away that experience of holding or smelling a book, the sense of touch or empowering the needful with literacy.

To learn about Libbraille, our previous software to develop braille display and learn about it, click here.