The Talking Book Service Speaks Volumes to Print- or Reading-Disabled Idahoans
Nearly 45,000 Idahoans (roughly 2%) are unable to read standard print, due to a loss of visual acuity or the physical capabilities necessary to read or hold a book. This deprives them of a joy the rest of us take for granted—namely, the power of the written word to inspire, inform and transport us through our imagination. Many times, this disability becomes another unfortunate reason for people to disengage from what’s happening in their families and the world around them.
That’s why the Idaho Commission for Libraries (ICfL) sponsors the Talking Book Service: to help caregivers and family members to connect loved ones and friends with reading through audio materials.
Beneficial beyond words
The Talking Book Service helps those unable to read standard print rediscover reading by offering a huge collection of free materials including:
• Over 25,000 Braille titles
• 80,000 professionally recorded audio books
• Audio magazines—and much more
These materials include fiction genres ranging from romance to westerns to mystery novels, along with non-fiction subjects of interest to all ages—everything from astronomy to zoology. Plus, the Commission plans to add 2,000 new titles each year.
Who is eligible?
To be eligible for the Talking Book Service, Idaho residents must meet one of the following criteria:
• Be legally blind
• Have certain visual field restrictions
• Be unable to see or focus well enough to read standard print, even with corrective glasses
• Have a physical disability that keeps them from holding a book or turning its pages
Apply for the Talking Book Service through the Idaho Commission for Libraries.
Ask your librarian about enrolling in the Talking Book Service
If you’re a caregiver or family member of someone unable to read standard print, you understand how easily they can feel isolated. As a free benefit to those that qualify, the Talking Book Service can make words come to life again, and help them re-engage through reading.
Explore the Talking Book Service in-depth at Idaho Commission for Libraries Talking Book Service page.