NFB BELL-ringing

As a mother of a special needs child The BELL program has it all—education, life skills, orientation and mobility, laughter and friendship. It instills confidence in the children who attend making them one step closer to reaching their potential in becoming competent, independent children!
— Alison Tarver, Mother of Nicholas

I love this time of year. Cooler temperatures and the festive atmosphere of holiday laughter and good cheer bring light-heartedness and smiles to young and old. Much has been written and sung about bells in association with the holiday season. But one need not think only of December when contemplating the ringing of bells. Summer bells have profound meaning for students, their families, and the instructors facilitating the National Federation of the Blind Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning (BELL) Academy!

NFB BELL is a nationwide initiative, and it has grown exponentially thanks to the love, hope and determination exhibited by members of the National Federation of the Blind to ensure that the next generation possesses the skills and attitudes needed to live the lives they want.

Below, you'll find a link to our NFB of Louisiana BELL Academy video. Special thanks to our tremendous state president, Pam Allen, and the many contributors, volunteers, and other supporters who make NFB BELL a life-changing program each year. Thanks also to videographer Ryan Pierce for the hard work involved in producing what we hope is an enjoyable and informative video. Braille Rocks!

What BELL means for my student...
BELL is independence, opportunity, and normality!
He is the BLIND kid at his school. That is how everyone knows him. At camp, he is just a kid. He gets to be with other kids who are the “blind” kid at their school and that makes him more mature and a better advocate for his independence.
He is expected to do everything for himself in my class but when I leave, that expectation leaves as well. Most people can’t help it. They do not have the experiences to let blindness be just a characteristic. With the experiences he is given at BELL, he becomes his own advocate. He is quick to tell people, “I don’t need any help with that. I learned how to do that myself this summer.”
— Kristen Sims, TBS and NOMC