In order to overcome acute shortage of Braille text books for visually impaired students of the country CDD established Braille Production Unit. It produces Braille education materials e.g. Braille text book, Braille documents for awareness, Policy paper, handouts etc and also supply to other organizations, agencies, Government agencies as and when necessary. Both English and Bangle Braille document produce through this unit on requests round the year.
Bangladesh Government initiative for Braille books:
The National Curriculum and Textbook Board commonly known as NCTB the autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Education in Bangladesh responsible for the development of curriculum, production and distribution of textbooks, started distributing free Braille textbooks for visually impaired students since 2016. Even though that was a positive development, the reach of these books remains far from adequate. The free distribution of Braille books has been continued this year as well
CDD has separate Braille section with 6 Braille printers along with one Braille box V4. There will be a produce different kind of books and distributed among the visually impaired students free of cost or at nominal cost.
Interesting facts about Braille writing system:
Braille is written as “cells” that contain of six raised dot patterns. These dots are arranged in a rectangle containing two columns, each having three of these raised dots. There are unique patterns for each letter in the alphabet. If the ‘regular’ letters were used it would be very difficult for a visually challenged person to distinguish between different letters, particularly those that are similar, such as ‘O’ and ‘Q’ in the English language. The same is true of all other languages. The Braille system is much more efficient.
How to write Braille by hand:
A slate and a stylus are used for writing Braille. The slate has small holes built in the form of standard size Braille dots. The stylus is used to punch out each letter, one dot at a time. Embossing with the stylus require special Braille paper, because conventional paper is too fragile for braille writing. Braille writing is harder than you think Braille has to be written backwards for it to be readable. You have to write the cells in reverse and have to write from right to left (or in case of languages like Hebrew and Arabic, from left to right). This is because; in order to create the raised dots you must punch the paper from the other side. Only then when you remove the paper from the slate and flip it over to read the raised dots they will be in correct order and orientation.