National Braille Press Receives $25k Grant to Purchase New Wire Binding Machine
MA Charitable Mechanic Association Provided the Donation
(Photo of spiral bound braille book Ten Ways to Hear Snow courtesy of National Braille Press)
(Boston, MA) –December 22, 2021 – National Braille Press (NBP) has received a grant of $25,000 from the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association (MCMA) to help NBP purchase a new wire binding machine for braille printed materials. The MCMA has supported NBP for several decades, providing over $380,000 in donations. In addition to the wire binder, the MCMA has also helped NBP purchase several other machines including a document scanner to optimize braille transcription and proofreading, a high-speed braille embosser, a laser cutter to streamline production of tactile graphics and a braille business card machine.
“We are grateful for the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association’s continued generosity and commitment to support our staff, with machinery and tools that improve the production of braille materials for the blind and low-vision community,” said Brian Mac Donald, President, National Braille Press. “Their latest donation helped to fund a new wire binding machine which is crucial to our production of tests, textbooks and print/braille books for our Children’s Braille Book Club.”
The MCMA’s decades of support has also helped NBP blind employees who work in production to better do their jobs by funding accessible braille displays for proofreading.
“MCMA is pleased to provide support to National Braille Press. Our long history of contributions demonstrates how strongly we believe in NBP’s mission and appreciate the opportunities NBP provides for blind workers,” says MCMA President Peter Lemonias. “We look forward to continuing that support in the future.
The Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association was founded in 1795 with Paul Revere as its first president. Throughout the years, the MCMA’s continuing efforts have been in the promotion of the mechanical arts and trades. The MCMA supports Massachusetts organizations that teach mechanical arts, employ people with disabilities and use vocational training and workshops as part of their programs. NBP braille printing products are produced on specialized printing presses that print braille code which requires proofreaders with extensive expertise in reading braille.
For blind people, braille is an essential tool that aids in the process of becoming literate. Braille literacy plays the same key role in a blind person’s life that print literacy does in a sighted person’s, by increasing opportunities for employment and academic achievement. Over 70% of working-age blind people are unemployed and depend on support such as disability income benefits. Of the 30% of blind people who are employed, the majority are braille readers. It is estimated that the lost productivity due to blindness and eye diseases is over $8.0 billion per year in the United States.
About National Braille Press
National Braille Press is a non-profit braille publisher and producer of braille products. NBP creates products and programs to support braille literacy in the blind community and to provide access to information that empower blind people to actively engage in work, family, and community. For more information visit www.nbp.org