BLINDA, mobile audio library for blind and partially sighted, presented as part of Croatian Book Night 2022
On 25 April 2022, as part of the 2022 Croatian Book Night programme, the National and University Library in Zagreb (NSK) hosted the presentation of BLINDA, a mobile audio library for the blind and partially sighted. Developed as part of an Erasmus+ project and supported and funded by the European Union, BLINDA was jointly presented by the Croatian Library Association and Zaklada Čujem, vjerujem, vidim, a Croatian foundation and publishing company focusing on titles for people with print disabilities.
The presentation opened with an introductory address by Dr Ivanka Stričević, the Director General of the National and University Library in Zagreb, the proud co-organiser of the Croatian Library Association’s I WISH TO READ TOO! campaign, aimed at persons with print disabilities. The programme also included addresses by the President of the Croatian Library Association Dr Dijana Machala and the I WISH TO READ TOO! campaign’s manager Željka Miščin. The BLINDA-related Erasmus+ project, its significance and planned activities were presented by the Head of the Zaklada Čujem, vjerujem, vidim foundation Mirko Hrkač and Head of the BLINDA consortium Marjan Povše.
According to the estimates of the World Health Organization, there are currently 26,350,000 blind and partially sighted people in the European Union, while the data supplied by the Croatian Institute of Public Health show that in 2019 there were 27,000 such persons registered in Croatia. The BLINDA mobile application is targeting this population group in Croatia, Slovenia and Germany, providing them with access to more than 6,000 audiobooks in Croatian, Slovene, German and English.
BLINDA was launched in 2019 and is run by a consortium consisting of eight partners from Croatia, Slovenia and Germany, with the support of the European Blind Union. Among other reasons, it was prompted by the requirements of the Marrakesh Treaty, according to which all EU countries have to integrate into their national legislations provisions enabling access to all types of copyrighted works, in both print and electronic form, for blind, visually impaired or otherwise print-disabled persons.
Public access to the BLINDA mobile application is scheduled for 30 April 2022.
NSK Director General Dr Ivanka Stričević at the presentation of BLINDA, a mobile audio library for the blind and partially sighted, developed as part of an Erasmus+ project, presented as part of Croatian Book Night 2022. National and University Library in Zagreb, 25 April 2022.