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Braille commems go up in space

Two Braille commemorative silver dollars were sent into space May 11 aboard the space shuttle Atlantis to help call attention to the plight of blind children in the United States.

The National Federation of the Blind says that only 10 percent of blind children today are learning Braille.

It is the hope of the NFB that it can sell 50,000 of the coins during the 11 days the Atlantis is in orbit.

Mark Riccobono, executive director of the NFB’s Jernigan Institute, said: “Blind children in America are facing a crisis – only 10 percent of them are learning Braille, leaving 90 percent illiterate. It is imperative that the general public act swiftly to reverse illiteracy among blind children. That is why we are asking everyone to purchase a Louis Braille Bicentennial silver dollar before Atlantis returns to earth.”

The proof version is priced at $41.95 and the uncirculated version is $33.95. Maximum mintage is 400,000 for the two versions combined. Visit www.usmint.gov for more information.

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