Read with your ears at Chilliwack Library

Chilliwack Library now has a listening station for sight impaired customers to listen to books and other audio.

Librarian Smitty Miller sits in the Chilliwack Library's new Listening Station

Librarian Smitty Miller sits in the Chilliwack Library's new Listening Station

Whether you like to read books or listen to them, Chilliwack Library can fulfill your needs.

Last week, the downtown library was retrofitted with a listening station, for its sight-impaired customers, featuring four, new digital accessible information system (DAISY) players.

It’s a first for the Fraser Valley, and librarian Smitty Miller says it’s long overdue.

A few months ago Miller was approached by a blind woman and asked if there was anywhere in the library she could sit and listen to books.

Miller’s heart sunk.

She’d been transforming the downtown library for months, making it more accessible, but until that moment, she hadn’t considered what the library was like for people who couldn’t physically read.

“I was really embarrassed,” she said. “That’s not fair. We have this collection [of audiobooks], why can’t people listen to them here? You can sit and read books, why not read this way?”

Miller approached Friends of the Library and Chilliwack Lions Club for financial assistance, and a few months later, the library was equipped with a listening station – four DAISY players with high quality headphones, and four coffee shop style chairs that have a swivel top table on the armrests.

The DAISY players are easy to operate with large buttons on the top. For every button pushed, a voice will playback what you’re doing. For example, if you pause the recording, it will say “pause” and if you eject, it will say “eject.” As well, there is also the ability to change the speed of the recording, enabling users to slow the narrator’s voice down or speed it up depending on their needs.

“The public library is all about being accessible for all; that’s what the public library stands for,” said Miller.

“So now, if that blind lady ever comes back, she’ll have a place to listen to her books.”

The DAISY players play CDs, MP3s, USB sticks, and SD cards.

While predominantly for sight-impaired customers, it is available for the general public as well.

The listening station is located in front of the audiobooks section.

kbartel@theprogress.com

twitter.com/schoolscribe33

Just Posted

Dancers from the Sts’ailes First Nation perform the eagle dance at a welcome banner dedication ceremony on Thursday, June 10. “Ey Swayel” is a Halq̓eméylem term translated as ‘a good day.’ (Adam Louis/Observer)
VIDEO: ‘A good day’ for Agassiz school as Sts’ailes welcome banner is dedicated

Banner hangs above the school’s entrance, welcoming students, staff and visitors

Kalyn Head, seen here on June 4, 2021, will be running 100 kilometres for her “birthday marathon” fundraiser on July 23. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack woman’s 100-km birthday marathon to benefit Special Olympics B.C.

Kalyn Head hopes run raises awareness, advocates for inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities

RCMP investigating June 15, 2021 crash. (Black Press file)
Chilliwack RCMP say crash into median led to impaired driver investigation

Chrysler 300 driver allegedly collided with tree on Spadina median in June 15 incident

UFV athletes were honoured for their strength and perseverance during the pandemic. (UFV photo)
Fraser Valley athletes recognized in year without sports

UFV Cascades athletes honoured for strength shown during the pandemic

Abbotsford council has given permission for Chilliwack to use the JAMES wastewater treatment plant for the disposal of trucked liquid waste until the end of September.
Chilliwack gets exemption to Abbotsford bylaw prohibiting liquid waste from other cities

Process in place until September while new facility under construction in Chilliwack

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

A search is underway for a 75-year-old fisherman who went missing near Port Angeles Thursday evening. (Courtesy of U.S. Coast Guard)
Search continues for angler missing between Port Angeles and Victoria

Canadian, U.S. Coast Guard searching for 75-year-old man reported missing Thursday evening

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

Bella Bella is on B.C.’s Central Coast, accessible only by air and ocean. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
B.C. provides $22 million for Heiltsuk development on Central Coast

Elders care home project, tourism, lumber mill supported

Most Read