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Report on Madressa An-Noor For The Blind's Visit To Egypt

Dates: 14-17 December 2009

Venue: Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Alexandria, Egypt.


All Praise is to Allah and Peace and Salutations be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) Our team (Moulana Murchie and Yaseen Mahomed) from Madrassa An-Noor for the Blind visited the Bibliotheca Alexandrina on a learning and skills sharing mission in terms of disability accessibility for the blind and information systems with special interest on the Daisy standard.

Daisy Books are accessible to the disabled community as they have synchronized digital audio and text files as well as a navigational pane that allows the user to navigate back and forth easily to any part of the book.

The Bibliotheca Alexandrina has a huge repository of information and is creating Daisy books in the medium of Arabic. This parallels Madrassa An-Noor for the Blind’s goal of creating duel text English and Arabic Daisy books. As we are all new to the Daisy standard, we are still learning by trial and error.

The Specialist wing for Visual Impairment of the library, the Taha Hussein Library for the Blind (Manager, Amr Hegazy) is mandated with the task of creating information in accessible formats and this is where our meeting took place.

We spent four days working on various Daisy file sets and error solving. A synergy between the two organizations was created in terms of creating multi-lingual Daisy books that will serve the needs of the Visually impaired worldwide.

We also visited their impressive Braille production unite. Our hosts generously shared with us a digital copy of the Holy Qur’an.

In Cairo, we had the opportunity of visiting Egypt’s premier Library and press for the blind. This place is known as the Al Markaz An Namoozigi lil Makfufeen. We purchased most of their Islamic and cultural Braille book publications.

Our visit was very informative and opened the way for greater interaction and information sharing. We also take this opportunity of thanking Sister Heba Kholeif for organizing this tour.

May Allah accept our efforts. Ameen.


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