For people who can’t read standard print the Colorado Talking Book Library (CTBL) provides free audio, braille and large print books keeping you connected to reading, stories and adventure.

This service is available to Coloradans of all ages. There is no fee for membership.

What do you do when reading becomes very difficult? Ask people to read your mail, newspaper or books? Hopefully, someone shares with you the best kept secret in Colorado. For over 85 years, CTBL in Denver has provided free library service to print disabled residents in Colorado.

Library service includes audio, Braille, large print books, and descriptive video delivered directly to your door postage paid. How great is that?!

Who is eligible for CTBL service? Anyone who cannot read standard print which can be caused by blindness or low vision, such as macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, cataracts, or glaucoma. Physical disabilities, such as diabetes, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, arthritis, traumatic brain injury, as well as learning disabilities.

Persons eligible for CTBL services must complete an application and signed by a certifying authority such as a librarian, teacher, service provider, your support group leader or a doctor. Applications are available by calling CTBL 800-685-2136 or on the website www.myctbl.org. Just click on the “Get Started” button.

Physical books and magazines go through the mail postage paid. A player for the books is provided as part of the service at no charge.

Additionally, books can be downloaded from BARD with the use of BARD Mobile for iOS or Android. More information can be provided on request. BARD is a great addition for those with a smartphone or tablet which allows the student to listen to audio books and get books 24/7.

CTBL has an in-house recording studio to record books of local interest, by local authors, and patrons’ requests. It produces about 75 books and 2 magazines per year. They are narrated by some 45 volunteers. CTBL uses about 200 volunteers to assist with every aspect of the library, as in the studios, mailroom, machine repair shop, and in processing the library’s mailings. Many volunteers have been with CTBL for 15, 25, and even 30 years.

CTBL is part of the Colorado State Library, a division of the Colorado Department of Education. CTBL partners with the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) at the Library of Congress. Every state has a similar library which creates a national network of libraries. If a patron moves to another state, their patron record is transferred to that state so they will not be without service. If you know friends or family in another state who needs the service, CTBL can provide the contact information.

For more information or to donate to the library, please contact CTBL at 800-685-2136 toll free or at http://www.myctbl.org.