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St Cecilia's

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Not so much a blog post today but an announcement and plea for help. Since 2004 we have been running a free audio-book library service for the blind and visually impaired. This has involved choosing texts, recording and making the audio books themselves, and operating a postal lending service. The need for the service is great. Blindness or visual impairment can affect any of us at any age, but it is often the elderly and housebound who experience their disability as most isolating. As users of St Cecilia's know, we don't simply provide audio books: we become friends with those who use the service, and there are many who will testify to the sympathy and interest shown by D. Teresa in particular. For the past four years, the Catholic National Library has contributed to the cost of maintaining St Cecilia's as a free service. Sadly, the CNL is no longer able to make any financial contribution but we are determined not only to maintain but also to expand the service we offer. In addition to our core collection of Catholic theology and spirituality, we have added over 130 titles of a more recreational nature and are hoping to make the audio books available not only on tape but also as DAISY Cds and mp3 downloads. This is a huge challenge on top of everything else we do. If you can help in any way, or know anyone else who could help, please get in touch. One urgent need is to replace much of the equipment we use to make recordings and process them. So, if you are a friend of Sony, Microsoft or Apple, or know someone who is, please get in touch. Even in these hard economic times, there may be some nearly new equipment that could be donated to the cause. PLEASE, no junk. If it's too old or broke for you to use, it's probably too old and broke for us, too. The people we serve deserve the best. You can read more about St Cecilia's here.