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Category: Bookshare Collection Highlights

Bookshare Members Now Have Access to Over 500,000 Ebooks

Benetech accelerates toward a future in which all digital content is Born Accessible By Brad Turner, VP Global Literacy, Benetech On November 29, 2016, Bookshare hit a momentous milestone when it passed the mark of 500,000 titles in its collection. That means that people unable to read standard print now have access to 500,000 ebooks in various formats to suit their individual needs. It wasn’t that long ago that the blind community had to rely on braille, a limited number of human-narrated books, or having someone read to them if they wanted to enjoy a book. Even just 15 years…

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Bookshare Touches Lives All Year Long

The goal of Benetech’s Bookshare initiative is to make reading accessible to everyone. Bookshare is the world’s largest accessible online library that serves over 400,000 members with print disabilities. In September, Bookshare reached a significant milestone when it delivered the ten millionth book downloaded. That’s an awful lot of accessible ebooks making reading possible for individuals with blindness, low vision, a physical disability, or a learning disability like dyslexia. Another way we are bringing the benefits of Bookshare to a wider audience is through partnerships with public libraries. Libraries in New York, Georgia, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia now offer free Bookshare…

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Make the Holidays Special with Bookshare

Bookshare has a wealth of titles for pleasure reading, cooking, crafting, and celebrating holiday traditions. The holiday season is full of joy and wonderment, especially when you explore new ways to make the season bright. Think back to baking or smelling a warm pie fresh from the oven, making a homemade gift, or hearing a child’s laughter reading a favorite bedtime story. Books about these holiday-themed activities and many more can be found in the Bookshare library. The collections team has chosen a variety of books that appeal to all ages and interests. Here are a few favorites for you to discover and…

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2016 Man Booker Prize Winner Available on Bookshare

The Sellout, by Paul Beatty, is the 2016 winner of the Man Booker Prize, a leading literary award that has brought recognition, reward, and readership to outstanding fiction for over four decades. The book showcases a comic genius at the top of his game. It is a biting satire about a young man’s isolated upbringing and the race trial that sends him to the Supreme Court. The Sellout challenges the sacred tenets of the U.S. Constitution, urban life, the civil rights movement, a father-son relationship, and the holy grail of racial equality. Paul Beatty is a fifty-four year-old New York…

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Bookshare Has the Books for Teen Read Week

By guest author Kathy Swartz, Bookshare Operations Administrator and Librarian Teen Read Week, October 9-15, is a reading event sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). The goal is to get tweens, teens, and young adults reading and talking about books. Bookshare, an accessible online library for individuals who cannot read traditional print books because of a visual impairment, physical disability or severe learning disability, has many books for this audience, and now we have even more. Thanks to a generous donation by Carole Lake, a long-standing supporter of Bookshare, we have been able to add an additional…

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Son’s Dyslexia Diagnosis Prompts Mom’s Search for Answers

Seth Gast has dyslexia and a language disorder. For three years, he has used Bookshare’s online accessible library for schoolwork and to find Boy Scout manuals to obtain his merit badges and become an Eagle Scout. His mom, Dina Gast, credits his academic progress to a renowned dyslexia center, excellent teachers and tutors, and Bookshare. In recognition of National Dyslexia Awareness Month, here is Seth’s story. Early Reading Frustration Entering first grade, Seth was a bright little boy, but his mom noticed his enthusiasm for school and learning diminish. He liked books, but seemed to be frustrated with reading. A…

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Benetech Delivers 10 Million Accessible Ebooks

Benetech’s Bookshare technology makes reading possible for over 425,000 individuals unable to read standard print and empowers students and adults to succeed in school, work and social inclusion.  PALO ALTO, Calif. — September 20, 2016 — Benetech, the leading nonprofit empowering communities in need by creating scalable technology solutions, today announced that over 10 million accessible ebooks have been downloaded through its Bookshare initiative. Bookshare is the world’s largest online library for people who are blind, visually impaired or have a physical disability that interferes with reading, such as dyslexia. “Access to information is a basic human right,” said Jim Fruchterman,…

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U.S. Marine Corps Veteran, now Economist, Appreciates Bookshare’s Vast Collection

“The online library helps me to stay current on in-depth issues and research for my profession,” says Tim Fallon. Four years ago, after losing much of his sight in an IED explosion in Afghanistan, Timothy Fallon, a former First Lieutenant in the U.S. Marines, learned about Bookshare at the Central Blind Rehabilitation Center at Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital. “The staff and the program at Hines for visually-impaired veterans are great,” he said. “They take the time to get to know their clients and knew that I wanted to return to college. They encouraged me to sign up for a…

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Visually-Impaired Veteran Helps Peers Transition to Civilian and School Life

“Technology training, leadership empowerment, and accessible books make all the difference,” says Tim Hornik The word “awesome” doesn’t begin to describe the work of Tim Hornik, a retired U.S. Army Captain and chair of TAVVI , the Technology Association for Veterans with Visual Impairments, the technology committee in the Blinded Veterans Association (BVA). Tim is visually impaired and a long-time Bookshare member. We originally featured his work in 2014, and it’s no surprise that today he remains diligent to help returning veterans make successful transitions to civilian and school life. In our first blog, Tim was a busy new father.…

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