Did you know there are an estimated 55 million people blind or visually impaired in the U.S.? Because of this, there's a great need to provide accessible Christian materials in Lincoln and around the world for these 55 million.
Christians Record Services, a Lincoln-based nonprofit, seeks to meet these needs. They specialize in making Christianity practical in everyday issues such as money management, health, and relationships for the blind and visually impaired. The impact they have also extends throughout 70 countries.
Christian Records serves more than 18 thousand clients here in the U.S. and worldwide. They offer large print and braille books, magazines, audio books and bible studies—all free of charge.
Because of this service, the organization relies heavily on conference offerings from the church and donors. A few of the donors are also clients.
Josh Kittleson, who has been running the call center for about five years, says he does everything from tracking orders, communicating with donors, contacting Lincoln public library systems and inquiring about any blind or visually impaired patrons who would benefit from their services, and also a little customer service here and there.
The many services available include a lending library which offers more than 1000 books in the U.S. on a digital cartridge, solar powered cartridge and in braille. inSIGHT4VETS offers a solar digital audio player that comes preloaded with a collection of books chosen specifically for the blind veteran.
For younger children ages three to nine, Wildlife Storytellers are soft, plush animals equipped with a solar digital audio player so as to share music and Christian-centered stories. Also included is a follow-along book for the parents to have a chance to interact.
Christian Records services works closely with community services, and school and church groups offering free magazines, books and other amenities to the legally blind.
Unfortunately, not everyone is informed as to the impact Christian Records has on the community. “I've never heard of that name before, do they make music or something?” replies sophomore Taylor Young. But after a brief explanation she thought it was a nice business to have in Lincoln, even if it has experienced locational upheaval several times within the last few years.
Christian Records was originally located across the street from Engle Hall, but due to limited space, it was relocated to 52nd St. About two months later it was moved again for similar reasons. It now currently resides on 15th St., which is about a 20-minute drive from Union campus. In about a month it will be moving again, but this time the new location will be right down the road somewhere on 48th St.
They'll soon be near, so take a few minutes out of your day to check them out.
Caroline Guchu is a sophomore studying communication.