Calibre Audio Library is a charity which provides free audio books for people who have dyslexia or sight problems. We have 6,000 digital fiction and non-fiction titles divided into 60 categories including the latest best sellers. The books are available on MP3cds and USB memory sticks; a streaming service will be available by the end of 2012.
The benefits for dyslexic people:
Our dyslexic members tell us they use our free audio books for a variety of reasons. These include simply enjoying a good story without the fatigue and frustration of struggling through a print book. Others use them for study or to listen to when they travel between work and college.
We have 1,200 Young Calibre members (half of whom are dyslexic) who have access to 1,800 titles (Key Stages 1 – 4) as well as the non X-rated section of the adult library.
We receive many letters and e-mails from children and parents thanking us for helping them enjoy reading again. Two Young Calibre members, Joshua and Matthew Macmillan from Stirling, told us they had written to 100 famous people (including Lady Gaga, the Prime Minister, the Duchess of Cambridge and Bill Gates) to say how they loved their books.
They came up with this innovative project to gain their Blue Peter badges. Mum Sara said she noticed Joshua’s interest in books began to wane a couple of years ago but since receiving his free audio books he has come on leaps and bounds, particularly his vocabulary.
Matthew used to come home and tell his parents about what everyone else was doing but now he can chat to his friends about the books he reads. He was inspired by a comment from another Young Calibre member who said he had become the best read child in his class.
Saying a big thank you:
Another Mum, Kathy Rogers, ran the Greater Manchester Marathon raising £1,200 for us. She says: “Calibre changes children’s lives. Seeing a child enthralled by a story when ordinarily they cannot read to themselves is an amazing experience.
Through this incredible service, these children are helped to develop their vocabulary and to imagine and explore the world around them. Reading can be something we take for granted, but for blind and severely dyslexic children this charity opens doors to worlds they otherwise struggle to explore by themselves."
How to Join:
To join Calibre there is a one-off joining fee of £35 (£20 for under 16’s). There is no annual subscription to continue using Calibre’s service – once you’ve joined, it is free to use for as long as you like! There are no postal charges or fines for late books. You just need to sign a membership form which can be downloaded from our website or we can send you one: just call our Membership Services on 01296 432 339.
To choose your books you can go online and browse through our titles then call or e-mail us with your list. Alternatively, we can choose your books for you; in fact many members say they have really broadened their reading experience in this way. Click here for more information about Calibre Audio Library.