Braille Institute is built upon a strong tradition of philanthropy dating back to 1919, the year of our founding, when John and Mary Longyear’s gift made the work of Braille Institute possible!  And that spirit of philanthropy carries on today through donations made by individuals, foundations, businesses, service clubs, volunteers, students, clients and staff – people like you, whose gifts continue to sustain and grow our vital programs and services.

Special thanks to Dr. Robert and Mrs. Helen Larner for their generosity…

Dr. Robert Larner and his wife, Helen, established The Larner Endowment Fund for Transforming Lives to ensure a lasting impact and help our students achieve their dreams! Gifts to the Fund ensure that people who are blind or visually impaired have access to the programs and services they need to transition from lives filled with limitations to lives filled with hope. Students assisted through our adult education and enrichment programs; our Library, low vision, and child development services; and national braille literacy initiatives will all enjoy much brighter futures.

Recognizing Our Donors

We are very proud to recognize donors whose generous gifts this past year earned them membership in one of the giving societies listed below.

The J. Robert Atkinson Heritage Society

In an effort to ensure that Braille Institute will have the opportunity to say “thank you” to people who have remembered us in their estate plan, the J. Robert Atkinson Heritage Society was established. Named after Braille Institute’s founder, The J. Robert Atkinson Heritage Society is our way of honoring those individuals who have provided for Braille Institute’s future through a will, trust, charitable gift annuity, bank account, IRA account, life insurance policy, company retirement plan, pension, or other instrument which allows the designation of funds to a beneficiary.  If you have included Braille Institute in your estate plan, we encourage you to register as a J. Robert Atkinson Heritage Society member.  To find out more about making a planned gift or a bequest to Braille Institute please contact our Development Department or visit the Estate Planning pages on this website.

Mary and John Longyear Society

Braille Institute was founded thanks to the generosity and vision of philanthropists Mary and John Longyear. Through the decades, other generous individuals, corporations, service clubs and foundations have played a profound role in furthering our service to blind and visually impaired persons of all ages.  These extraordinary donors whose cumulative giving totals $500,000 and more are recognized in the lobby of the Sight Center in Los Angeles.

1919 Circle

A giving circle, named after the year of our founding, that includes all donors who made gifts of cash, securities, or property, regardless of gift purpose, (excluding planned gifts and bequests) in a cumulative amount of $1,000 or more in a calendar year.

Naming Opportunities

Opportunities may exist to sponsor some portion of a new or renovated Braille Institute facility, or to establish an endowment fund in the donor’s name. If you are seeking a significant naming or recognition opportunity, please contact our Development Department to learn more.

For more information about Braille Institute Donor Recognition please contact our Donor relations team:

741 North Vermont Avenue
Los Angeles, California 90029
Phone: 1-800-BRAILLE (272-4553), Ext. 1238
Fax: (323) 663-1428
Office hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (PST), Monday – Friday