NFB BELL® Academy

The NFB BELL Academy provides children with Braille and nonvisual skills instruction through fun, hands-on learning activities. Young blind girl smiles and shakes homemade musical instrument.

My child had an enjoyable time and her confidence in Braille has grown. My favorite thing that has come out of this camp: You removed the fear and anxiety she had about going blind! She now knows she will be okay and will have the skills to succeed. I think that alone is worth everything!

The NFB BELL Academy—which stands for National Federation of the Blind Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning®—is a nationwide (United States and Puerto Rico) summer program that prepares blind and low-vision children to grow into confident and independent blind people who live the lives they want.

Activities are provided in a day program or residential setting, depending on location. In addition to Braille crafts, games, and other engaging projects, children learn vital independent living skills, interact with blind adult mentors, and enjoy field trips to sites related to the NFB BELL Academy curriculum. Through these activities and interactions, the children learn that blindness or low vision does not define them or their future.

NFB BELL Academy typically runs Monday through Friday for six hours each day for two weeks.

Who Should Attend

Blind and low-vision children, ages four through twelve, who:

  • Do not receive enough Braille and nonvisual skills instruction in school
  • Could benefit from more Braille exposure over the summer
  • Would enjoy connecting with blind role models

To be honest, for a mother with a low-vision child, I was very uneducated by the blind word, and I didn't think he could attend an event like it…A friend that was taking her son, told me that I should try and we did. The first day was like a whole new world of possibilities and knowledge opened up for me.

2022 NFB BELL In-Home Edition

Young blind boy smiles and kneels down next to his NFB BELL seeds that are sitting in the sun

The National Federation of the Blind is offering one three-week virtual program of the NFB BELL Academy In-Home Edition this summer to prepare blind and low-vision children to grow into confident and independent blind people by enhancing their education. Options are available for beginner, intermediate, and advanced students July 18 through August 5, 2022. Space is limited.

  • Applications are now closed.

Each class will receive a box of materials for the program. Check out the unboxing video for the selected class to go over the list of exciting items. 

Unboxing Your Materials - Beginners Class

Unboxing Your Materials - Intermediate Class

Unboxing Your Materials - Advanced Class

2022 NFB BELL Academy: In-Person Programs

The National Federation of the Blind hosts NFB BELL across the country. Activities are provided in a day program or residential setting, depending on location. Please check the participating states for more details. 

Participating States in 2022

Below are participating states of the 2022 NFB BELL Academy. Review more details for your state.

If you have questions about a program in your area or are interested in bringing NFB BELL to your state, please contact [email protected].

Supporters

Thank you to the following organizations for their generous support of the NFB BELL Academy.

As a coordinator I was so happy to see how excited each child was each morning when they came into the BELL classroom. Each child was willing to try new things and they are excitedly looking forward to next year's BELL Academy.

UPS logoSeedlings, Braille Books for Children, logo.American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults logo.

More Information

For more information about the NFB BELL Academy, please contact us at [email protected].