Working with a partially sighted artist and adding braille to a coin for the first time, the Royal Canadian Mint has launched an innovative silver coin and bronze medallion set honouring the 100th anniversary of the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB).
This limited-edition collector set celebrating a century of providing invaluable assistance to generations of blind and partially sighted Canadians can be ordered as of today.
“The Mint is delighted to have produced an exceptional coin and medallion set which recognizes the incredible difference the CNIB has made in the lives of blind and partially sighted Canadians over the last 100 years,” said Sandra Hanington, Mint president and CEO. “This coin and medallion set is a beautiful work of art which celebrates the strength and resilience of extraordinary Canadians who inspire us all.”
The coin and medallion set was designed by artist Meghan Sims, of Kitchener, Ont. Born with a rare visual condition called Achromatopsia, she is fully colour blind. Her unique visual perception of the world around her has shaped and become characteristic of her artistic style.
“We are honoured the Royal Canadian Mint has chosen to tell CNIB’s story of a century of dedication to people who are blind and partially sighted,” said John M. Rafferty, CNIB president and CEO. “We’re delighted to have a memento as enduring and symbolic as a commemorative coin set to mark this important milestone in CNIB’s history.”
Since Mint collectibles are normally encapsulated to maintain their condition, a medallion is included in this anniversary set—intentionally presented without a capsule—so the braille engraving of the legend “CNIB-100-INCA” as well the entire relief of its design can be experienced through touch alone. In providing a unique tactile experience, the medallion captures many of the design elements found on the reverse of the silver coin. These include:
- the number “100” engraved in braille;
- an abstract eye over a mountain scene to represent the foundation of the CNIB; and
- a curved horizon evoking an eyelid, along which seven jack pines honour each of the CNIB’s founding members.
The jack pine was chosen as a symbol of the strength and resilience of people living with sight loss.
The coin’s obverse features the effigy of Queen Elizabeth II designed by Canadian artist Susanna Blunt.
The 2018 $30 Fine silver coin and bronze medallion set, “100th Anniversary of the Canadian National Institute for the Blind,” has a mintage of 3,000 pieces and retails for $219.95. The silver coin has a diameter of 50 mm while the bronze medallion has a diameter of 52 mm.
For more information, visit mint.ca.