Blind people in rural Nigeria get their teeth into job opportunities
By Kelechi Michaels for Fantsuam Foundation
KAFANCHAN, Nigeria, 13 May 2010
In 2009, APC member Fantsuam Foundation took on the training of 583 people in ICT, 221 of which were women, and one who was physically handicapped in their academy. While the training was successful and inclusive, one group who could greatly benefit from such training was absent: people who cannot see.
However this will change in 2010 as Fantsuam introduces JAWS (Job Access With Speech screen reader application) training to its curriculum making its Basic computer skills and Advanced computer skills classes available to the blind and visually impaired.
Working with a small grant from VSO, support from Freedom Scientific (developer of JAWS) and visually impaired students from the University of Jos, Fantsuam will train up to four instructors in JAWS and a six-week (60 hour) foundation course that will prepare students to enter the Academy’s open classes.
Five of the Academy’s 30 Inveneo computers will be equipped with the JAWS (Job Application With Speech) screen reader application. At least one will be permanently based in Fantsuam’s new rural Community Communications Centre, giving those students that can’t afford their own computers, the opportunity to use the computers and surf the web outside of class time.
During the year also Fantsuam staff celebrate the arrival of new leaflets about the Foundation, produced and delivered free of charge by Williams Lea plc, one of the world’s leading document outsourcing companies.
Picture left to right(brochures-apc.jpg) :
John Dada (chief executive), Dori Vila (US international volunteer with GAIYA), Kazanka Comfort (director of operations), Kelechi Michaels (director Fantsuam Academy), Akin Arowolo (GAIYA programme manager)