Levoča, Slovakia, 7.4.2016

Braille, as one of the essential means of communication for the visually disabled in Slovakia, becomes less and less popular. Young people prefer electronic communications with a screen reader and other digital resources that do not require knowledge of Braille. This was precisely the reason why we, in the Fund of Help in Levoča, have decided to participate in an international project aimed at reading, writing and editing Braille text using special equipment Easylink. This device manufactured by the Polish company Harpo enables to work with text using 12 Braille character display with buttons and is controlled by computer without using the regular keyboard and screen. Using Easylink and similar technical equipment can help to popularize Braille among young people and thus to broaden opportunities in normal and professional life.

This year the Fund of Help organized for the first time the national competition in reading, writing and editing Braille using short Braille display. The competition was held on April 7 at the premises of RSZP.

Contestants had the task to read correctly and in the shortest time text consisting of 100 words. Individual contestants had the time measured. Recorded times were 1 minute and 55 sec. to 3 min and 27 sec.

Next task for competitors was to write text consisting of 300 characters, which was dictated from one of the referees. The resulting points for the dicipline were 296 to 289 points.

Editing poems and sending texts to address of the referee was only at the level of training, whereas contestants worked with specific Braille display only shortly.

The final position and scoring:

1.Ľuboš Pinteš395 points

2.Peter Nedorost392 points

3.Andrea Migacová390 points

4.Erika Bursová389 points

5.Dominika Pozdechová386 points

First three contestants will take part in the international round to be held in late April in Prague, under the International Visegrad Fund auspices.