Braille Without Borders

What is Braille Without Borders (BWB)

BWB is a developmental organization that creates training programs and Braille book printing houses for visually-impaired people. The organization aims to work anywhere in the world as it does not intend to set any borders and boundaries for blind people. It is important that every individual is given opportunities in society. BWB intends to use the Braille script to give visually-impaired people to use the script and be able to get access to literature and knowledge. Once these individuals know how to use the script, this will give them the opportunities to learn and perform a profession that enables them to be integrated in society. One of the goals of BWB is the realization of an International Institute for Social Entrepreneurs (IISE) in Triviandrum, Kerala, South India.

Values and Beliefs

  • There are no borders within the possibilities of people with blindness.
  • Blindness is no reason for social exclusion.
  • Blindness ought to be viewed free of bias, not as a strain or a deviance.
  • Blindness is not a disability when: (1) society accepts blindness as an equal form of life and should not discriminate people for being visually-impaired; (2) people with blindness have access to opportunities that allow them to learn techniques and methods that compensate for them not being able to see; (3) people with visual impairments can organize themselves and work for equal opportunities.
Target Groups
People with blindness and visual impairments, regardless of race, creed, national origin, sex, age, ability, social status, financial status, religious affiliation.

Activities and Goals

  • Focus on help for self-help.
  • Train visually-impaired people from all over the world so they are able to set up their own Braille Without Borders training centers for the blind, social projects for other marginalized groups of people or environmental projects in their own regions /countries (the training includes: Management, Project planning, Fundraising skills; English, speech and debate training; Computer hard & software, use of special equipment for the blind; Administration and bookkeeping skills; Communication and PR; Practical training in existing development projects).

Source of information and photos:

Donkey Business Training for blind people in Vietnam

Donkey Business Training for blind people in Vietnam

donkey bakery

On Monday Morning of 25th of May 2015, Donkey hosts a group of blind people for a business training.

Hoa, our Customer Manager who is blind too, trained them during an hour. A very interesting moment, which support blind student in their future career! This training allows them to be more confident in the future. Hoa proves them that you can succeed in business and be blind.

As a social company, it is our goal to help people with disabilities. It is important for us to prove them, and the others, that they  can work effectively. They are eager to improve their skills, and knowledge.

from Vietnamese Bakery in Hanoi Trains Blind People

Thusano Association for the Blind in South Africa

Thusano Association for the Blind in South Africa



  • To establish a profitable bakery for Thusano Association for the Blind.
  • To develop the strong presence in the community needed to support sales goals.
  • Set up a cost – effective distribution network using the Infropreneurship network concept, that will ensure
  1. To setup an economically viable and sustainable bakery in Jan Kemp Dorp .
  2. To create permanent jobs, alleviate poverty and improve the living conditions of blind people and the broader society
  3. Promote job creation and self – reliance by subcontracting young and blind entrepreneurs in the bakery’s production distribution network.


Project deliverables:

The purpose of the proposal was to raise funding for:

A Bakery

  1. Convert the donated hall into a bakery by
  • Adding a new roof on to the building
  • Doing the appropriate plumbing and electrical work
  • Doing the necessary brick work
  • By and install the bakery equipment and accessories.



  • The Thusano Association for the Blind Bakery Project, is a not – for – profit organization in Jankempdorp whose primary objection is to promote and enhance the well- being of blind people in the area.
  • The Jan Kemp dorp municipality has donated a disused hall in the township to Thusano to be converted into a commercial bakery.
  • The bakery is 100% owned by Thusano Association for the Blind, which is a legally registered NPO.


get to know more about the bakery

Baking Our Daily Bread

Baking Our Daily Bread

by Barbara Pierce
American National Federation of the Blind

As regular Kernel Book readers know Barbara Pierce is the wife of a college professor and has raised three children. She serves as editor of the Braille Monitor (the National Federation of the Blind’s monthly magazine), works from a fully equipped home office–complete with computer, e-mail, and Internet access—a work arrangement which meshes perfectly with her love of homemaking. Here is what Barbara, who is totally blind, has to say about baking our daily bread:

One day my college roommate, whose usual cooking projects were limited to what she could achieve in our popcorn popper, returned from a trip to the supermarket with two loaves of frozen bread dough. She announced with glee that she was going to bake them and provide us with warm, homemade bread to go with the cheese spread, oranges, and brownies my mother had sent in her latest care package.

Having been party to dinner-roll making at home, I was skeptical about how well the loaves would rise in our frigid dorm room, but I went off to class hoping for the best. When I returned several hours later, I was gratified to find that the loaves had thawed but unsurprised to observe that they were still the same thin logs they had been when they arrived, even if they were now pliable.

Water left in a cup did not quite freeze in that dorm during the winter, but I had been glad to master the art of dressing while still wearing my flannel nightgown. I decided I would have to intervene if we were to have bread for supper.

By combining the available resources, I managed to construct a sort of incubator using my stool and desk lamp and my roommate’s sheepskin throw. It worked beautifully, and gradually through the afternoon the bread began to rise. Those loaves were only the first hatched in our cobbled-together incubator that year and baked in the kitchen down the hall.

At home the following summer I began experimenting with making bread from scratch. My mother was trained as a home economist, and what she does not know about cooking is not worth learning. She taught me the rules for handling yeast correctly and for kneading dough effectively. In the end I learned not to be afraid of bread-making. It was a gift that has held me in good stead through the years.

The spring before I got married, the minister’s wife at the church I attended while a student gave me a recipe for making four loaves of wonderful potato bread. I made the recipe several times before we had children, but I found it infinitely valuable once the children came along and began enjoying peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and fresh bread and jam. But the best part of that potato bread was my accidental discovery that it lent itself beautifully to bread sculpture.

This is an art form ideally suited to blind bakers and small children, because as long as the sculptor’s hands are clean, the dough can be handled and reshaped as often as necessary. (Mother can even surreptitiously reconstruct a masterpiece that has suffered from the competition of too many small hands.)

I eventually learned to divide the dough into three equal pieces and give each child a section of counter, a greased cookie sheet, and his or her part of the dough. This did not end the warfare exactly—bargaining sessions for a little dough from a neighbor’s unused hoard had some tendency to turn into raids. But for a number of years in our family, Christmas preparations included making loaves of bread in the shapes of Santas, angels, Christmas trees, bells, and shepherds to give to neighbors and friends.

Octopi, Easter bunnies, Jack o’lanterns, and Valentines warm from the oven have also been eagerly consumed through the years with melting butter and raspberry jam in our kitchen.

When a cook is unafraid of yeast, the word spreads like magic. For years now I have made communion bread for our church. And hot cross buns, filled with currants and spices and decorated with crosses in lemon icing, are my contribution to the annual breakfast at church between the Easter services. I have even begun supplying the three-kings cake, which is really a sweet bread filled with candied cherries and raisins, for our Epiphany celebration.

People who don’t bake are often surprised that I do so much of it. My husband is a college professor, so through the years I have turned out an endless array of cookies, bars, cakes, and quick breads for his classes. Doing that kind of baking is fun, and it’s important to me to feed students who aren’t getting homemade treats. But bread-baking satisfies something deep inside me. Kneading bread dough is a wonderful way to release frustration or anger and turn them into something nourishing and comforting. Even the fragrance of baking bread is a blessing to everyone who steps through the door.

Bread is a living presence in the kitchen. It is very forgiving of mistreatment or neglect. A loaf that has been left to rise for too long can be kneaded and reshaped for another try. If the room is too cold, moving the loaf to a warm place is enough to persuade it to begin rising. Even if the cook manages to kill the yeast, a little more can be dissolved and worked into the dough to rescue the project. It is easy to tell when bread is done even when one can’t judge by looking at the color. A tap with fingertips on the crust readily tells the listener when the loaf is ready to be tipped out of the pan onto a cooling rack.

Several years ago I received a bread machine for my birthday. Since I had gone back to work and the children had left for college, I had fallen out of the habit of bread baking. The machine and the books of recipes for single loaves of mouth-watering breads I subsequently received inspired me to begin baking bread again.

But this time it was altogether different. The machine instructions said that I was to place the various ingredients in the bowl in a prescribed order, close the lid, press the correct button, and wait for the finished loaf to materialize. It seemed implausible, but it worked. The only problem was that the loaf was shaped like a flowerpot.

All went well, however, until the day I discovered that my bread machine had suicidal tendencies. During the kneading cycle, the machine sometimes began walking itself toward the edge of the counter. As long as I was in the room when this dangerous behavior began, I could keep pushing it back to safety. It was only a matter of time, however, until I was out of earshot and it actually leaped off the counter with a resounding crash and unfortunate consequences to the machine.

The first time this happened, the glass dome shattered. So much for baking oddly shaped loaves. I quickly discovered to my joy that I could remove the dough from the bowl at the end of the kneading process and shape the loaf myself, allow it to rise in the conventional way, and bake it in the oven.

My new arrangement worked well for quite a long time. Of course, the machine continued its self-destructive behavior, and every time it fell another dent appeared or something else rattled its way loose and eventually off. The cord was too short for me to place the bread machine on the floor while I was using it, and nothing that I could devise kept it from wandering.

My poor machine leaped from the counter for the last time months after I had made the transition to doing the baking myself. So I happily abandoned the machine that had taken up so much space on my counter and retained all the wonderful new recipes I had collected. My mixer has a bread hook, so I began tossing together the ingredients and beating them with the mixer to make loaves as easily and efficiently as the machine ever did the job.

It pleases me to bake, slice, and serve my own bread. But I couldn’t bake all our bread the way I do if I did not work at home most of the time. In fact, I count providing all our bread as one of the many advantages of having a job that keeps me at home.

What does any of this have to do with blindness? Nothing and everything. Like thousands of other Americans I love to bake. My family regularly sits down to fresh Stollen on Christmas morning, homemade pizza with Italian bread crust, and crusty French bread loaves on picnics. The only difference is that my family laughs together to think how many of the people who know us only casually believe that my husband must necessarily prepare all the meals in our home, do the laundry, and keep the house clean. He grumbles that it is hard to wear the crown of sainthood undeservedly.

Gradually we in the National Federation of the Blind are teaching the public that blind people can and do carry out our responsibilities, living full and productive lives. Through the years I have taken much satisfaction from feeding my family and teaching my children, God’s children, and the children of my friends to bake their daily bread.

Help Change What It Means To Be

Blind By Taking These Actions

* Take time to learn what blind people are really like. Get to know one of us on a personal basis.

* Promote Braille literacy. Insist that blind children be taught Braille in the public schools. Blind children who can’t read can’t compete.

* Tell an employer that blind people can be good employees. Blind people face a 70% unemployment rate. You can help.

* Seek out parents of blind children. Help form a support group in your community. Informed parents give children opportunities.

* Distribute Kernel Books (stories about the capabilities of blind persons) to local public libraries and schools.


reposted from here

Not by Bread Alone

Not by Bread Alone

Not by bread alone

Direction and Stage Production – Adina Tal

Eleven deaf-blind actors take the audience on a magical tour in the districts of their inner world; the world of darkness, silence and…bread. As the process of bread making unfolds on stage – the dough is being kneaded, raised and baked “for real” – a unique encounter occurs between actors and audience. Together they re-enact vivid or distant memories, recall forgotten dreams and joyful moments and ‘touch’ the spark of Creation present in every one of us.
The actors take the spectators into those magical moments between reality and fantasy, between grandeur and ridicule, and always eventually return to the basic meaning of bread as a symbol of our longing for a home.

The path to the show

The show “Not by Bread Alone” is the second production of the “Nalaga’at” Theater Deaf-blind Acting Ensemble. The rehearsals for the show have lasted two years. For many months we studied the process of bread-making and worked at adapting the length of the play to the exact duration of the whole bread-making process, thus, seeking to create a time unit common to the actors and the spectators. Bread is much more than the sum of its ingredients. While learning the bread-making process, little moments of sheer happiness, memories, experiences, and dreams unveiled. All along, we looked for new methods of communication, as a group and as an ensemble of actors. Sessions of total darkness and silence were arranged for the touch-sign language interpreters during the drama workshops, in order to help them better understand the actors’ daily life.
In the course of the show the beat of a drum is occasionally heard on stage. This cue announces the start of a new scene. The actors on stage can neither see the hand hitting the drum nor hear the beat, however, they can feel its vibration. This capacity is the result of a long and complicated process during which the actors have learnt to feel the vibration of the beat as it travels in the air. This is an example of a new method of communication we have developed combining this group’s unique personal and somewhat dramatic situation with the drama presented on stage.

Set Design: Eithan Ronel
Set Construction: Meir Ben-Hakon, Alon Levi
Costume Design: Dafna Grossman
Props: Liron Koren
Lighting Design: Ori Robinstien
Original Music: Amnon Baaham
’Dancing Closely” Lyrics, Music, and Sung by: Zvi Tal
“Italian Market” based on a Naples folk song: Zvi Tal

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