Library of smells for the blind and visually impaired to open in Poland

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Library of smells for the blind and visually impaired to open in Poland.

IN a first of its kind for the country, Poland plans to open a library of smells at the Educational Centre for Blind Children in the locality of Owinska, western Poland.

Marek Jakubowski, a centre spokesman, told the Polish Press Agency (PAP) that dried flowers and spices, railways engine grease, perfume and even elephant dung will be among the scents to sample.

“Smell allows us to discover if we are passing by a park or whether we are getting close to a street,” he said, adding that the idea for the library came from the children at the centre to help the blind and visually impaired learn more about the world that surrounds them.

The centre launched an appeal to find “interesting smells” and began to receive packages from around the world.

“Even large perfume manufacturers sent us their fragrances, namely, their precious scent bases,” explained Jakubowski.

The facility will be open to the public, along with the Spatial Orientation Park and the typhloacoustic laboratory and museum already operating at the centre.

The park is the first of its kind in Poland and possibly the only one in Europe created to help the blind and visually impaired learn spatial orientation and navigate in traffic.

The typhloacoustic museum showcases a variety of devices historically used by the blind, including Braille tablets, maps and touch graphics.


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Tara Rippin

Tara Rippin is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News, and is responsible for the Costa Blanca region.
She has been in journalism for more than 20 years, having worked for local newspapers in the Midlands, UK, before relocating to Spain in 1990.
Since arriving, the mother-of-one has made her home on the Costa Blanca, while spending 18 months at the EWN head office in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol.
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