Richmond library collects smartphones for visually impaired people

The Richmond library has started a new initiative collecting used smartphones to donate to blind and visually impaired people.

Through Phone it Forward, a partnership between various Canadian libraries and the Canadian National Institute for the Blind Foundation, you can bring in your old cellphone, put it in a pre-paid postage envelope and donate it directly to CNIB.

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The phones will be refurbished to be used by people who are partially sighted or blind.

“This is a great opportunity for community members upgrading their technology to give back to those in need,” said Stephanie Vokey, library spokesperson.

CNIB will turn on accessability features included in all smartphones, and install apps to help blind or partially sighted people read prescription labels, recognize loved ones' faces and navigate using GPS. 

People who donate eligible phones will also get a tax receipt from CNIB.

All of Richmond’s libraries now have a supply of envelopes to donate to the program.

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