Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
Article 19 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Commonwealth Braille & Talking Book Cooperative (CBTBC) is intended to promote the collaboration and sharing of resources among the Braille and talking book libraries of the Commonwealth and other interested institutions. Central to this collaboration is the sharing of Braille and talking books between our respective institutions so as to benefit the blind, vision impaired and print disabled of the Commonwealth.

This project in no way should be viewed as a replacement for the work on a wider talking book treaty or the work of the WIPO which we fully support. We seek here to achieve two goals:

  1. Greater cooperation between talking book libraries in the Commonwealth.
  2. Support for talking book libraries and users in developing nations within the Commonwealth.


Membership in the Cooperative is open to any library, agency, school or other entity serving the blind, vision impaired or print disabled (dyslexia, etc.) operating with in the Commonwealth or such organisations from any British overseas territories, mandates or former mandates and Crown Dependencies.

Also eligible are organisations from nations or states with an historic, cultural or linguistic tie to the Commonwealth. This would include locations such as the United States and it constituent states, territories or former territories (The Philippines for example) as well as nations such as Ireland and Zimbabwe. Membership is at no cost.

Please email info@cbtbc.org for membership enquiries.


Current members of CBTBC include the following institutions


For more information or to join the cooperative please contact:

Commonwealth Braille & Talking Book Cooperative
c/o BC Libraries Cooperative
Suite 320
185-911 Yates Street
Victoria, BC V8V 4Y9
Email: info@cbtbc.org

Frequently Asked Questions

A list of questions we are commonly asked about the cooperative

Mailing list

The CBTBC maintains a low volume mailing list. You are invited to join if interested. Here are the essentials:

CBTBC Resources

CBTBC maintained Braille codes

The cooperative has developed and maintains Braille codes for languages spoken in member nations which do not have existing codes in use.

A proposal for the representation of emoticons in Braille
A Braille code for writing Braille in the Cherokee syllabary used in the United States
A Braille code for writing Braille in the Inuktitut syllabary used in the Nunavut and Quebec in Canada. Media coverage of the development of this code.
A Braille code for writing Braille in the Klingon language. Klingon is a the fictional Klingons developed by Marc Okrand in 1985 for the Star Trek television and motion picture franchise.