It is great news that the World Summit on the Information Society Annual Forum this year has designated Monday 8th April as Accessibility Day, and will be running a series of workshops and exhibitions to profile this important occasion. Please mark the day in your diary, share the news, and if possible attend yourself. There will be opportunities for online participation, but we are hopeful that as many people as possible will be able to be there in person.
The UNESCO Chair in ICT4D and the Inter-Islamic Network on IT will jointly be convening another of their series of workshops on turning rhetoric into reality, policies into practice, and welcome involvement from as many people as possible to maek this hands-on, practical workshop a success.
It is great to be part of the Global Disability Summit being convened by DFID, The International Disability Alliance and the Government of Kenya at Here East in London, with the Civil Society Forum being held on the 23rd July and the Summit itself on 24th September. The Summit is intended to “raise global attention on a long-neglected area, mobilise new global and national commitments on disability inclusion and showcase good practice, innovation and evidence from across the world”. For those unable to participate in person, there is Livestreaming of the event.
As the Summit programme notes, “The Summit is built around four themes (dignity and respect for all, inclusive education, economic empowerment and technology and innovation) and includes additional crosscutting and strategic spotlight sessions. We are building a movement of change, and we invite you all to be part of the legacy of the Summit and sign the GDS18 Charter for Change: an expression of our collective ambition commitment that unites us all”.
It is excellent to see the UK government highlighting the importance of empowering people with disabilities through this summit, and I hope that global media will give it the prominence that it deserves. However, its impact will depend very largely on what we all do afterwards. I very much hope that the rhetoric is indeed turned into reality.
I am really grateful to Cyrus Dylan for suggesting some useful practical advice resources for those living and working with people with disabilities. These can be found at the Practical Advice sub-page under Links to Resources.
Please do suggest other resources should you wish to recommend material for inclusion on our site.
Thanks again to Cyrus
Just to note that there is a new deadline of 14/10/16 for nominations for the 2016 UNESCO/ Jaber al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities http://en.unesco.org/prizes/digital-empowerment – do please consider applying or suggest nominations. It is a great opportunity to raise the profile of institutional and individual successes in using ICTs to empower people with disabilities.
UNESCO has just announced the launch of the UNESCO/Emir Jaber al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, the closing date for which is 9th September 2016. Key points about the Prize are as follows:
The UNESCO/Emir Jaber al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (hereafter the Prize) is to:
- recognize the outstanding contributions of individuals and organizations in promoting the inclusion;
- and enhancing the lives of persons with disabilities through the application of digital solutions, resources and technologies.
In line with UNESCO’s strategic objectives and especially the Major Programme Communication and Information, this includes translating human rights and fundamental freedoms into action, with a particular emphasis on removing barriers to enable greater access to information and knowledge, as well as learning and participation in society through the effective application of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).
The Prize has also direct thematic linkages to other UNESCO’s Major Programmes.
- UNESCO awards the UNESCO/Emir Jaber al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities every two years. All individuals, institutions, other entities or non-governmental organizations active in the field of inclusion of persons with disabilities in society can present themselves as eligible candidates. UNESCO’s Member States, UNESCO’s National Commissions and Non-Governmental Organizations in official partnership with UNESCO are invited to solicit, nominate and submit candidates for the Prize.
- In order to participate, all applications must be endorsed by the Government of a Member State in consultation with its National Commission for UNESCO. The relevant non-governmental organizations maintaining official partnerships with UNESCO could also endorse applications. Therefore, Member States need to submit a written recommendation in support of the candidate’s project. Self-endorsements cannot be considered.
Please share this information and UNESCO’s link to the Prize as widely as possible.
Tawasol: A really useful resource for those with communication and literacy challenges at the interface between the Arabic and English worlds. It is a bilingual Arabic / English symbol dictionary of the most frequently used words in spoken and written communication (Tawasol in Arabic) represented by images and pictograms. It is hoped the freely available symbols designed in Doha with the support of a Qatar National Research Fund project can become part of a toolkit of strategies to benefit those with communication and literacy difficulties.
I’ve just updated the page of key readings on ICT use by people with disabilities – https://disabilityict4d.wordpress.com/key-readings/. These are publications that I have found to be useful, but I know that there is much more good literature out there. Please do add suggestions in the comments section beneath, and I will add the best of these to the list! Thanks in anticipation!
The Arab Gulf Programme for Development (AGFUND) is pleased to invite the UN, international and regional organizations, ministries and public institutions, national NGOs and qualified experts worldwide to submit nominations as deemed eligible for the 2016 AGFUND International Prize for Pioneering Human Development in the field of “Empowerment and Social Integration of Refugees and Internally Displaced people”.
As this invitation is open to all regions of the world, I would appreciate very much your cooperation in circulating the Press Release copied below (Arabic, English, French, Spanish, Russian and Portuguese) through your network and mailing list.
For more information, please visit AGFUND website http://agfund.org/
This is the text of a recent post on Facebook from Nabil Eid, who has done much to champion the use of ICTs by people with disabilities:
“Dear friends, kindly find my blog this week at Telecentre.org http://bit.ly/1qPWsSQ . Hope to get your opinion!
A new survey around telecommuting indicates that 81% of professionals with disabilities would like to teleworking, at least part time.
Today’s ICT innovation is changing the world, world of Assistive Technology (AT) and high-speed Internet access mean new choices and good paying options for people who want the flexibility and convenience of careers that don’t require commuting to an office, or working for someone else.
It is a possible form of employment for persons with disabilities provided care is taken over selection of workers, identification of work that is suited to the telework format and management of telework units by employers.
#Teleworking #Telework #employment #telecommuting #Remote_working #Job #Disability #PWD #persons_with_disabilities #working_at_home #Assistive #technology #AT #ICT #accessibility #A11y #Middle_East #MENA #Arab_sates“
Great to see this new story from the Daisy Consortium about the great work being done by Vashkar Bhattacharjee and the YPSA: “Vashkar Bhattacharjee has climbed what would seem to many people around the world as an unscalable summit. His achievements are many, and he continues to strive to improve the lives of people with disabilities in his country, Bangladesh. Vashkar has attended numerous international conferences and has, on behalf of his organization, YPSA, received several awards in recognition of their accomplishments. The odds against this are very high. In his story Vashkar tells us how he overcame those odds.”
I still remember how inspirational he was at the ICTD2010 conference that we ran at Royal Holloway, University of London!