In the early 1950’s, many babies were born blind because of Retinopathy of Pre-maturity, formerly known as Retrolental Fibroplasia (RLF). This disease causes abnormal blood vessels to grow in the retina that enables us to see. This growth can cause the retina to detach from the back of the eye, leading to blindness. Obviously, there was a problem when these children were ready to start their formal education. The Superintendent of Schools in Santa Clara County asked PTA Sixth District President, Sylvia Cassell, to form a project with the mission to braille books for school children. In response, The BRAILLE TRANSCRIPTION PROJECT OF SANTA CLARA COUNTY was officially established in 1956. The Braille Transcription Project of Santa Clara County was incorporated 1988 with independent exemption status and a 501(c)3 classification.
As children grew, went on to college, and later still, found employment, there was a huge need for manuals and professional materials. Once again, the project met the need. The Braille Transcription Project of Santa Clara County, Inc. has been transcribing printed materials for the Blind ever since. Currently, we are staffed by volunteers with oversight by an uncompensated board of directors.
To this day services such as, Brailling, Thermoforming, Order Processing, Billing, Shipping, Library Maintenance and Customer Relations are performed by our staff of dedicated volunteers. Our library contains over 1000 titles. As other Braille Projects close down due to losses in funding or lack of volunteers, the Braille Transcription Project of Santa Clara County. Inc. continues to serve the Blind community.
The Braille Transcription Project of Santa Clara County provides Braille, free of charge, to blind students attending regular public schools in Santa Clara County and to blind professionals. We provide Braille textbooks outside the county on a cost-only basis. We transcribe English, math, algebra, geometry and biology textbooks and workbooks. The Project maintains a Braille fiction and non-fiction library for the blind population at large for free. Besides the textbooks and the library, the Braille Project also does calendars, greeting cards, playing cards, menus, knitting/crochet instructions, bus schedules, and any other personal braille requests. We teach braille to the sighted as well as the blind. A Parent who wants to help their child with schoolwork or a person who wishes to volunteer are all taught free of charge. All we require is a commitment to volunteer for one year transcribing for the project.