Braille Education in Kenya

Braille is a system of reading and writing by touch used by the blind. It consists of arrangements of dots which make up letters of the alphabet, numbers, and punctuation marks. The basic Braille symbol, called the Braille cell, consists of six dots arranged in the formation of a rectangle, three dots high and two across. Other symbols consist of only some of these six dots. The six dots are commonly referred to by number according to their position in the cell:

There are no different symbols for capital letters in Braille. Capitalization is accomplished by placing a dot 6 in the cell just before the letter that is capitalized. The first ten letters of the alphabet are used to make numbers. These are preceded by a number sign which is dots 3-4-5-6: Thus, 1 is number sign a; 2 is number sign b; 10 is number sign a-j and 193 is number sign a-i-c:  Braille improved communication for the blind by giving them a quick and efficient way to read and write

“Braille can be very helpful in creating more independence in the lives of blind people. If our college textbooks or other materials we need to educate ourselves are available in braille we are better able to read them and get our studying done without enlisting the aid of someone else to spend hours reading to us.” -Chris Coulter

Braille  is a small, portable device that enables them to communicate with sighted people. The device has a QWERTY keyboard with an LCD display on one side, and an eight-cell braille display on the other side. The sighted person types short text on the QWERTY keyboard. The deaf-blind person reads the printed text by placing his or her fingers on the braille display. He or she then uses the braille display to type back text. The sighted person can read the text on the LCD display.

See Also: Deaf music

Colleges offering Braille Education in Kenya

  1. Machakos Teachers Training College, Machakos 
Machakos Teachers Training College was started in 1958 purposely to train female students but later male students joined in. Since its inception, the institution has been offering T3, T2, T1 and T1- up-grader teacher training courses. In addition,the college caters for students with special needs like visual,hearing and physical impairment. Currently the college trains P1 teachers only. Machakos Teachers Training College has trained many Primary School teachers and is now the only one training students with hearing, visual and physical impairments.

2. Rural Aid Kenya Training Institute, Athi River 
RURAL AID NGO was created in January, 1978 in United Kingdom (UK) and registered under the Non-Governmental Organizations Code as a non-profit making corporate organization, with branches internationally which include US, UK, JAPAN, SOUTH AFRICA, KENYA, SUDAN, UGANDA, TANZANIA, ETHIOPIA, LIBERIA, BURUNDI, TURKEY Among others, RURAL AID NGO has an aim of empowering the vulnerable ( the youth through scholarship education, women, children and persons with disabilities), by fighting the ever-increasing rate of HIV/AIDS, falling standard of education, low awareness on basic human rights, poor sanitation and unhygienic conditions as well as the upsurge of poverty evident within communities in world as whole.

The aid programme has a focused of empowering and making those marginalized especially the youth, women, children and persons with disabilities agents of their own development. This we believed will accelerate and ensure speedy and sustainable reduction of acute poverty ensure the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals of reducing extreme hunger and malnutrition, access to education and health care, gender equity, promotion of democratic rights and eradication of HIV/AIDS, inter alia, by 2017.

They Provide Braille training a certificate in Braille

3. Kenya Institute of Special Education, Kasarani 

Kenya Institute of Special Education (KISE) was established  in February 1986.The Institute is run by a council appointed by the Ministry of Education.The institute offers the following programs at both certificate and diploma level:
(a) Consultants in Special Needs Education
(b) Community Based Rehabilitation Officers.
(c) Sign Language Interpreters
(d) Braille Transcribers

KISE As it popularly knows has this Vision To be a regional center of excellence in special needs education and related services. A mission to provide high quality world class training in Special Needs education and produce educational materials and assistive devices for persons with disability through excellent services, professionalism, and integrity. and Philosophy In pursuit of knowledge, wisdom and life long education for persons with special needs and disabilities to lead self-reliant lives

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