Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival

cinematouchingdisabilitylogo

The Coalition of Texans with Disabilities (CTD) is hosting the Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival and Short Film Competition. This annual event features films that display disability accurately and positively. The festival was created as an entertaining way to eradicate common misperceptions about disability.

Founded twelve years ago by CTD staffer, William Greer, this is the first film festival in Texas with an explicit focus on cross-disability films. Since its foundation it has grown to be the longest running and most successful disability film festival in the state.

This year the festival will feature The Rebound and Deaf Jam at the Alamo Drafthouse Village the first weekend of November, 2016.

Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival
Dates: November 4, 2016 – November 5, 2016
Times: Doors open at 5:45 PM and close at 9:45 PM

Location: Alamo Drafthouse Villiage, 2700 West Anderson Lane, Austin, Texas 78757

For more information visit: http://www.txdisabilities.org/news-events/film-festival/filmfestival-2016/2015-festival

San Antonio Public Library’s Children’s Low Vision Reading Room

Children's Low Vision Reading Room Sign

The main wall of the San Antonio Public Library’s Children’s Low Vision Reading Room has a sign which spells “Hello” in Braille above the word written in Latin letters below. Beneath this is the phrase “Feel the alphabet” in Latin letters only. Under this is the alphabet in Latin letters with their Braille equivalent

The Children’s Low Vision Reading Room is located on the third floor of the Central Branch of the San Antonio Public Library (map) in the Children’s Department. Funded by the Semmes Foundation, which was formed for charitable, scientific, and educational purposes, the Reading Room houses the library’s collection of children’s Braille books and kits with a book and audio combination. Children can use the equipment in the room to enjoy the audio materials available at the library. Materials from the room can also be mailed to qualifying participants of Free Matter for the Blind and the library’s own Books by Mail service. Currently, the room also houses a temporary touchable art exhibit.

For more information, go to http://guides.mysapl.org/special_needs or call (210) 207-2500

San Antonio Art Museum Multisensory Tours

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The San Antonio Art Museum (SAMA) provides a free multisensory tour of selected items from their collection on the first Saturday of every month at 10 a.m. The items on each tour are united by a theme. Using descriptive language, scents, touchable props, and music, the docents provide an experience of art that is truly accessible to all. Currently, SAMA offers seven different multisensory tours. Previous tours have included: Life, Death and the Afterlife; 19th and 20th century art in Europe and the Americas; Sculpture; and Asian Lands. Reservations are required for the tour. Call 210-978-8138 or email tours@samuseum.org.
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Multisensory Tours
Dates: First Saturday of each month
Time: 10 AM
Location: San Antonio Art Museum, 200 West Jones Avenue
San Antonio, TX 78215
For more information visit: www.samuseum.org or call (210) 978-8138

Low Vision Events in Houston in July 2016

There will be two low vision events in Houston in July 2016:

Low Vision Education Day

Friday, July 8th, from 9 a.m.-noon.

Center for Visual Rehabilitation, Raye and Ed White Conference Center, at 6400 Fannin St, 19th Floor.

This expo will include sessions and a vendor area to learn about products and services for the low vision community. The event is free. The program will not begin until 9 a.m., so individuals who arrive early will be asked to wait downstairs.

Please RSVP by e-mail to lowvision@cizikeye.org or call 713-559-5269.


Houston Area Insight Expo

Saturday, July 30th, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Health and Biomedical Sciences Building at the University of Houston main campus, 4811 Calhoun Road, Entrance 2A

The fifth annual Houston Area Insight Expo was originally scheduled for April 30th, but had to be canceled at the last minute due to historic flooding in Houston and surrounding areas. The expo will also feature workshops and a vendor area for attendees to learn about community resources. In addition, breakfast will be provided. Attendees who registered for the first event do not need to re-register. The cost is $5 for individuals who register before July 15th, and $10 for those register after July 15th.

Please go to the HAVIN (Houston Area Visually Impaired Network) Facebook page for the registration link and media release form: https://www.facebook.com/havintx/?fref=ts

Houston Area Insight Expo

5th Annual Insight Expo
Sponsored by the Houston Area Visually Impaired Network (HAVIN)
Date: Saturday, April 30
Time: 9 AM – 2 PM, registration begins at 8:30 AM
Location: University of Houston (Main Campus), Health and Biomedical Sciences Building, 4811 Calhoun, Houston, TX

The theme this year is “Advocacy In Action” with workshops discussing Advocacy in the Community, Advocacy in the Workplace, and Advocacy in Government.
It will be a half-day of programming, workshops, and shared resources for the greater Houston visually impaired community.

For more information visit: facebook.com/havintx

The Talking Book Program visits Rodriguez Elementary School

On Tuesday, March 8th, Disability Information & Referral Coordinator Dina Abramson and Reader Consultant Victor Hunter, along with Texas State Library Communications Officer Steve Siwinski, visited Rodriguez Elementary School to help the students celebrate Read Across America week and Dr. Seuss’ birthday. Victor read a print/Braille copy of his favorite Dr. Seuss book Green Eggs and Ham to two second grade classes as school librarian Barbara Mott held up the pictures from a print version of the book. After the reading, Dina and Victor answered questions about Braille and blindness. Each student received a Braille alphabet card. And the two classroom teachers gave Victor thank you notes with Braille on them. When the students learned that Victor’s birthday was the next day, they sang “Happy Birthday” to him.

Special thanks to Steve for taking pictures and providing transportation. Also a big thank you to Amanda Shaver from Bookspring for helping to set up the event.

Here are some pictures:

TBP Reader Consultant Victor and DIRC Coordinator Dina with staff from Rodriguez Elementary. Big smiles all around.
TBP Reader Consultant Victor reads a Braille copy of Green Eggs and Ham aloud to a rapt audience of Rodriguez Elementary students.
TBP Reader Consultant Victor holds up a print-Braille copy of Dr. Suess' Green Eggs and Ham.
Rodriguez Elementary students enjoy exploring Braille with Braille alphabet cards.

Schneider Family Book Awards

The American Library Association has announced the winners of the Schneider Family Book Awards for 2016. Each year the Association selects books in three age categories that portray realistic depictions of children and teenagers with disabilities. This year, two books were awarded prizes in the nine – thirteen age category. Winning authors and illustrators receive $5,000 and a framed plaque.

Please click on this link to read about the winning books:
https://www.disabilityscoop.com/2016/01/25/childrens-books-disability/21819/

You can request the winning books from the Talking Book Program! Here are the titles, authors, and book numbers, along with annotations for each book.

EMMANUEL’S DREAM: THE TRUE STORY OF EMMANUEL OFOSU YEBOAH by LAURIE ANN THOMPSON

BR 21066

NLS Annotation: Born in Ghana with one deformed leg, Emmanuel was raised to reach for  his dreams. He hopped to and from school more than two miles each way,
provided for his family, and eventually became a cyclist and activist
for people with disabilities. PRINT/BRAILLE.  For grades K-3 and older
readers. 2015.

FISH IN A TREE  by LYNDA MULLALY HUNT

DB 80497, BR 21151 (Braille is in process at NLS)

NLS Annotation: Bullied and moved from different schools, sixth grader Ally creatively
distracts anyone from discovering that she has problems reading. But one teacher, Mr. Daniels, helps her understand that she has dyslexia and encourages Ally to understand her feelings in a new way. Commercial audiobook.   For grades 4-7 and older readers. 2015.

THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE  by KIMBERLY BRUBAKER BRADLEY

BR   20662, DB   80472

NLS Annotation: A young disabled girl and her brother are evacuated from London to the English countryside during World War II, where they find life to be much sweeter away from their abusive mother. Commercial audiobook. For grades 4-7 and older readers. 2015.

THE UNLIKELY HERO OF ROOM 13B by TERESA TOTEN

DB   82326, BR   21201 (Braille is in process at NLS)

NLS Annotation: Adam struggles with his OCD therapy assignments, and his relationship with his divorced parents doesn’t help matters. During a session at
his OCD support group, however, he falls for fellow member Robyn and
decides to save them both. Some strong language. Commercial audiobook.
For senior high and older readers. 2015.

Houston Low Vision / Blindness Support Group

The Robert Cizik Eye Clinic in Houston operates a low vision / blindness support group that meets on the second Friday of every month, from 10:30 a.m. – noon, in the Cizik Eye Clinic Conference Room on the 19th Floor of Memorial Hermann Medical Plaza. Each meeting focuses on a different topic related to vision impairments. February is Low Vision Awareness Month, so that meeting will emphasize local resources that are available to educate and empower the low vision community.

Please contact Tamara Traber for more information about these monthly meetings:
ttraber@cizikeye.org
713-559-5216

To learn about the Center for Visual Rehabilitation at the Cizik Eye Clinic, click on this link: http://www.cizikeye.org/low-vision-visual-rehabilitation/

Unified English Braille (UEB) Information Available

As of January 4, 2016, Unified English Braille, or UEB as it is commonly called, is now the official literary code for the United States and all other English-speaking countries. From this point forward, all Braille books and magazines available from the Texas Talking Book Program, through the National Library Service, will be produced in UEB format.

Braille users need not fear this change. UEB is not drastically different from the previous Braille code. Minor updates have been made to contractions, capitalization, punctuation, and other symbols.

Please contact the Disability Information and Referral Center at 800-252-9605 (toll free in Texas), 512-463-5458, or e-mail tbp.services@tsl.texas.gov for a fact sheet on UEB resources. You may also visit the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) web site at http://www.brailleauthority.org/ueb.html for more information.

AHEAD: Austin Disability Employment Symposium and Job Fair

The AHEAD symposium and job fair will be held on Friday, January 29, 2016, at the Region 13 Education Service Center, 5701 Springdale Road, in Austin. The symposium runs from 8:30 – 11 am, with the job fair to follow from noon to 2 pm.

Both the symposium and the job fair are free for job seekers and employers. A continental breakfast will be available from 8 – 8:30 am.

Online registration is required prior to the event for both job seekers and employers. Registration will close at noon on Thursday, January 28, 2016. Space is limited.

Job seekers with disabilities should register by following this link:
Job Seeker Registration

Employers interested in attending the symposium may register here:
Employer Registration

Employers interested in having a booth at the job fair may register here:
Booth Registration

AHEAD is an acronym for Alliances Helping Employers Achieve Diversity and is not affiliated with the Association for Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD).