Improving access for VIP customers

As part of  National Customer Service Week, Newcastle Libraries are launching a new designated area on level 3 of City Library to highlight the materials and resources available to help support our visually impaired (VIP) customers.

The area will include the following:

-A computer with a 22” screen which will have Supernova screen magnification software, a large keys keyboard and headphones.

-A new book and document magnifier will be available and staff will provide a demonstration of this.

-A new ‘Penfriend’ which will assist customers choosing library materials by communicating the item details.

-Large print newspapers will be available.

-Materials  will be displayed in a variety of formats, including spoken word, MP3, DVD with audio description and large print books.

-Samples of the Talking Newspaper will be available, supplied by Tyne Sound News, and there will be the option of joining the scheme.

Customers will be able to work independently or alongside staff on a one to one basis in the VIP area. Internet taster sessions are available on a range of subjects including family history and online shopping.

There will also be information regarding supportive organistions such as the RNIB and NHS Choices.  Magnifying sheets and bookmarks will be given out at the launch on 4 October and will continue to be on sale after the launch.

An event for visually impaired readers called Touching the Past is planned on 7 October from 1pm to 3pm to give an insight into the books and other historical resources held in the Heritage section. To book a place at this session phone 0191 2774100 or email information@newcastle.gov.uk.

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