Q: The Kansas Audio-Reader Network is holding its big benefit sale – “For Your EARS Only” - at the Douglas County Fairgrounds at 6 o’clock tonight, where you can find thousands of records, CDs and audio equipment. Audio-Reader has been serving blind and visually-impaired listeners for a long time. Do you know how long? What year did Audio-Reader begin broadcasting from the University of Kansas?
The Kansas Audio-Reader Network is a reading and information service for blind, visually impaired, and print disabled individuals – primarily in Kansas and western Missouri. Established at the University of Kansas in 1971, Audio-Reader was one of the first radio reading services in the world (the second such service in the USA). With the help of a small staff and about 350 volunteers, Audio-Reader operates 24 hours a day, reading daily newspapers, magazines and best-selling books on the air and on the internet. The service also provides automated newspaper readings by telephone. Services are offered free of charge to anyone in our listening area who is unable to read normal printed material. Audio-Reader volunteers read more than 150 daily and weekly newspapers, including advertisements (like grocery store flyers and discount ads).
With the help of FM radio broadcasters, cable TV companies and the Kansas Lions Sight Foundation Satellite Network, reading by radio is available to thousands of visually-impaired people, providing them with greater personal independence.
Fun factoid: A-R’s volunteers must first pass a challenging reading test before they are allowed on the air.
Click HERE to see the mighty reach of the Kansas Audio-Reader Network.