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Free Accessible Books for Pennsylvanians with Reading Disabilities

At LBPH we have traditionally served people who are unable to access the printed word in typical ways.  Through the Library of Congress’ National Library Service, librarians and many other professionals have been able to certify people into the NLS program who are blind, visually disabled or who are unable to hold a book or turn its pages, allowing a return to a love of reading they may have lost due to disability. Doctors were required to certify applications for people with reading disabilities, but not anymore. 

We are very excited to tell you that the Pennsylvania Libraries for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia are now able to ease certification to allow children and adults with reading disabilities, such as dyslexia, to take part in the NLS program.

Both Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh – LBPH and Free Library of Philadelphia – LBPH have been invited by the Library of Congress’ National Library Service to take part in a year-longpilot which allows Pennsylvania patrons with reading disabilities to be certified into the National Library Service program by teachers, librarians and other professionals recognized by the NLS as competent authorities. 

This is great news because certified patrons with reading disabilities will be able to access downloadable audio books through the National Library Service BARD app to any smart device. BARD (standing for Braille and Audio Reading Download) gives qualified patrons access to tens of thousands of free audio titles from current best sellers to timeless classics.   

We need your help to get the word out to children, teens and adults with reading disabilities like dyslexia, across all demographics, who have print disabilities! 

Please click here for an application or for more information about the many ways we help connect people with accessible books.  Or call the friendly Reader Advisors at CLP-LBPH at 1-800-242-0586 to see if you qualify.

For more great articles and book recommendations from the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, subscribe to our e-newsletter! Follow this link and select “Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped” to subscribe.

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