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Call for Abstracts: 2018 National Conference (due January 26th, 2018)

The Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians (AEBC), founded in Kelowna, British Columbia in 1992, will be celebrating 20 years of providing workshops in an effort to celebrate the full inclusion and participation of blind, deaf-blind, and partially sighted Canadians in all aspects of society. Through its public education, peer support, training opportunities, and public policy advocacy activities, the AEBC and its members have accomplished a great deal. While improvements sometimes happen in small increments, the future has a lot of promise.

The conference will take place the weekend of Friday, April 27th – Sunday, April 29th, 2018 at the Metrotown Hilton hotel in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. Throughout the day on Friday, April 27th, a variety of workshops will be presented based on the ideas that are submitted through this Call for Abstracts.

The Theme: The AEBC, Our Journey, Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

The AEBC invites workshop proposals on themes of interest to blind, deaf-blind, and partially sighted Canadians. The conference seeks submissions from consumers who are blind, deaf-blind or partially sighted, researchers, government, private enterprise, not-for-profit and charitable organizations, and others, with a particular focus on where we as a community have come from, what we have achieved, and where we need to move in the future.

Topics may include, but are certainly not limited to:

  • Accessibility
  • Advocacy
  • Braille
  • Citizenship and Social Participation
  • Copyright and Library Access
  • Education
  • Employment
  • Human Rights
  • Rehabilitation Services and Independent Living
  • Technology

Conference Audience

Attendees at the 2018 Conference may include blind, deaf-blind and partially sighted consumers (including members and non-members of the AEBC itself), vision professionals and teachers, parents, and others with an interest in the issues faced by the community. Some of these individuals may be well-versed in technology and have a personal understanding of the blind, deaf-blind and partially sighted community, while others will be complete newcomers to the organization and the environment. As such, presenters should not assume that the audience will have any significant background knowledge or understanding of the issues, technologies, or the historical context. The conference presentations are primarily an opportunity for public education and information dissemination.

As many participants will be blind, deaf-blind or partially sighted, speakers are encouraged to be cognizant of the accessibility challenges that PowerPoint or video presentations may present, and to provide presentation information and documentation in alternative formats (large print, braille, electronic) wherever possible. More information will be provided to accepted authors on deadlines, etc. for submitting information to be included in conference delegate packages.

Presentation Format

The presentation rooms will be set up with half-round tables or chairs facing a front table or podium from which the presenter may speak. Use of a microphone is required to assist those who may have difficulty hearing, and because conference proceedings are recorded and broadcast live via an Internet audio stream for those who cannot attend in person.

Each presenter will have a 1 hour time slot in which to present their workshop, inclusive of time for questions and discussion.

A screen and LCD projector will be available for those who have slides or videos to show. TVs, overhead projectors, and other audio/video equipment will not be available, and presenters will be expected to bring their own laptop or other device, along with any adapters they might need to connect a projector, for presenting their materials. If you have any other special requirements, please indicate this in your submission and we will investigate whether we can accommodate your needs.

Application Process

Presenters must complete the “Abstract Submission Form” at the end of this Call for Abstracts, and email it to no later than Friday, January 26th, 2018. Each abstract will be reviewed by a committee to judge its appropriateness and suitability for the conference and its relevance to attendees. The committee will be striving to present a cohesive, well-rounded program within the conference theme. It is anticipated that many more abstracts will be received than there is room to fit into the conference program, and a decision to not include any particular presentation is not a reflection of the quality of the submission.

The review committee reserves the right to edit abstracts and biographies for grammar, spelling, fluency, etc., but will seek your final approval before this information appears in the conference program.

The primary contact for each abstract will be informed of the status (accepted or rejected) in February 2018. You will be informed of the deadline by which you must confirm your participation in the program, and provided with further details about registering for the conference at that time. (Acceptance of a presentation does not automatically register you for the conference itself).


For further information or if you have any questions, please contact Betty Nobel at or call 1-800-561-4774 and leave a message.

Application Form

Please download the attached Microsoft Word document for a copy of the abstract submission form.

Archival Date: 
Friday, January 26, 2018
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