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#WeAreGrateful: Giving and Receiving Thanks

“Reading is joy, life, and success. Thank you, Bookshare.” -Lisa

Sometimes the simplest words of gratitude are the most profound. For individuals who face barriers to reading, the setbacks can ripple through academic performance, job opportunities, social connections, and even mental health. Fortunately, ebooks in alternate formats like enlarged text, audio narration, and braille can make all the difference and open the door to joy, life, and success. 

As we prepare for the Thanksgiving season, the Bookshare team is grateful for everyone in the community who made a difference in someone’s life: a teacher who mentored a struggling student, a parent who supported and encouraged a child to read, or a volunteer who scanned and proofread a book on a Bookshare member’s wish list.  

Salute to Classroom Rock Stars 

Bookshare is thankful for all of the educators, Assistive Technology specialists, teachers of the visually impaired, and other student support professionals who work tirelessly to create an inclusive learning environment. By providing accessible books in easy-to-read formats, teachers help accelerate learning and make independent reading less intimidating. 

“The students who use Bookshare in their general education classes benefit from the service since it allows them to keep up with the same reading assignments that their peers have. By using Bookshare, my students have demonstrated better comprehension of the text, which in turn has led to increased participation in class discussions as well as improved test scores.” 

– Joe Manzella, special education resource teacher, Michigan

Volunteers Scan and Proof Wish List Books 

Thank you to the Bookshare volunteers whose dedicated work helps us provide more books to the Bookshare community. Over the past five years, volunteers have added over 4,600 books to the collection. In 2020 alone, they scanned and proofread more than 550 books! Curious what the volunteers enjoy reading? Find out in this special collection of volunteers’ favorite books

Adult Members Give Thanks 

Every Day is a Gift: A Memoir by Tammy Duckworth

Adults with visual impairments or blindness face dependence and isolation. Bookshare gives them access to a world of books and keeps them engaged and connected. 

Every Day is a Gift: A Memoir by Tammy Duckworth gave me empathy for cultures and situations outside of my experience. However, many Bookshare books could qualify as one in a million. It’s especially gratifying to recommend books to friends and read them at the same time they’re available to others. ” -LeeAnn

Cozy Up with a Book this Thanksgiving 

Not sure what to read next? Browse these special reading lists for some ideas: 

“Bookshare is one of the most valuable tools in my kit. For scholarly pursuits, for keeping up with literature making a current splash, for diving back into items overlooked in earlier reading adventures, and for so many other reasons, I cherish this resource and congratulate you on refining it perpetually. In short, Bookshare is exactly the sort of library for which those of us have long yearned.” 

-Nicholas Racheotes

Save the Date for #GivingTuesday  

This GivingTuesday, let’s create more equity in literacy for youth. Through your generosity and a $45,000 match from the Benetech community, we can empower youth who long to read, but don’t have access to the Bookshare ebook library. Save the giving date for Tuesday, November 30, or get ahead by making your gift today

 #WeAreGrateful today and every day for everyone in the Bookshare community. 

2 Comments

  1. Chris Jones

    My wife and I are both blind and learned Braille early in life. We are now retired with two married daughters who have young children of their own. I was the first blind graduate of Winter Park High School in Winter Park, Florida, near Orlando, in June of 1970. My parents had to advocate for me to be able to attend this public school, and I will always be grateful for that, and for my mother, who learned Braille while my dad was stationed at the Presidio in San Francisco the year prior to being transferred to Paris, France. While there, my mother transcribed everything except my Math book for me with three kids to raise–my eldest sister was away in college.
    I retired from having served as the Student Disability Specialist at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood, near Tacoma, Washington.
    There I had many opportunities to encourage prospective students to improve basic skills and to learn vocations for which they could make meaningful contributions.
    I am retired now, and have really come to value Bookshare significantly.
    Thank you, one and all, who assist in this valuable resource.
    My first pastor’s father, a seasoned African-American preacher, used to say,”If you can read, you can lead.”

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