Members of the recording group Koe ("Voice")
1999winners contribution to society
Marking 25 years of recording newspapers and new books onto audiotape for distribution to people with visual impairments
Members of the recording group Koe ("Voice")

Founded: 1974; members: 20, plus one recording engineer (as of January 2000)

Award summary

1999 was the 25th year since Recording Group Koe began to produce tape recordings of various readings and delivering them to people with eyesight problems. This activity began with recording the ward bulletin of Sumida-ku, Tokyo, by three or four people. Later the group began to record newspaper articles and literary works. For the past four years, they have been producing, publishing and sending three tape recordings every month. About six people take part in making one tape. They make arrangements, check and study the method of reading, and make dedicated endeavors to produce tape recordings that please the subscribers (blind listeners). Their activities are diverse. They record newly published books at the request of individual subscribers and hold a recital once a month.

Reasons for this award

There are a great many volunteers and volunteer groups among the townspeople, but this group deserves praise for its 25 years of uninterrupted activities and for having the zeal to improve their reading skills and making good tape recordings, as revealed by their inviting an announcer to teach them the skills. It is unique that newspaper articles, too, are included in the materials.

Comments from the winner

With the wish to respond to handicapped people's desire to obtain the same information as other people do, we have enlarged the scope of our activities to include newspapers and newly published books.All of us are doing our utmost to publish the tape recordings punctually. Up to the present, we have been publishing them exactly as scheduled without a single omission. We are proud of this and it helps make life worth living.We will continue doing our best to help the handicapped.