Region Three persons with disabilities benefitting from one time computer literacy programme

Accessibility to computer literacy is being made easier as persons living with disabilities in Region Three are benefitting from a new one-off Basic Computer Literacy for Special Needs programme which is being offered by the Ministry of Human Service and Social Security.

The Department of Public Information (DPI) on Tuesday managed to catch up with a few of these participants who are undergoing the training at the Leonora Technical and Vocational Institute on the West Coast of Demerara.

Students learning on their computer

Many of the students expressed their gratitude for being allowed such an educational opportunity so that they can develop skills that are applicable to this technological world.

Icelyn Bascom

Speaking with little Icelyn Bascom, she noted that she is happy to be learning something new and also interacting with her fellow peers.

“I’m learning about the computer… about typing and this is helping me type by myself. I have hope in myself so I know I got this,” expressed the energetic young woman.

The 12-year-old Bascom stated that it is a whole new environment from what she is accustomed to but she is happy to be in new places.

Meanwhile, Ashinna Abrams, who hails from the hinterland, said that travel to the region to take up as many opportunities as she can.

“The training is a very good training. I don’t regret taking it. Even though I have a computer I didn’t know about everything so this basic computer training is teaching me a lot and I learning a lot from it,” said the woman.

The young Abrams, who owns a small business, stated that the training will help equip her to properly use a computer to improve her customer service.

Vlyssess Edwards

Similar sentiments were also shared by Vlyssess Edwards as he has since ventured into the business industry.

“As a person with disability there is a huge struggle in terms of getting capital for my wants and needs and employment is really scarce. So, as a person with disability I ventured out into becoming self-employed and so Microsoft and Excel would be a key component in knowing my totals and so forth in my own business,” Edwards explained.

The young man also expressed his delight to be interacting with others, while at the same time teaching his peers and sharing opinions.

Assistant facilitator teaching one of the students

Furthermore, Rebecca Singh, a single mother from Tuschen, East Bank Essequibo, shared her thoughts on the training which she described as ‘beneficial.’

“I try to come out and learn something rather than being home. I am happy that I’m here and I am happy that I brought my son so that he can see that his mom is learning and he’s learning as well,” Singh remarked.

She hopes one day to become a teacher so that she can share her knowledge with others who may be in a similar position.

Also speaking with facilitator of the programme, Kim Spencer, she explained that the students are learning very quickly and are becoming confident in themselves as the days go by.

“This programme is helping to get rid of the stigma that is normally attached to persons with disabilities or other mobility issues or special education needs, and I think that they are also seeing themselves in a different light. It is boosting their confidence,” stated the teacher.

She said that she is grateful to be empowering the minds of both children and adults, as empowerment is a tool for success in everyone.

The new one-off programme which is for eight days is equipping 16 disabled persons with the requisite skills in computer literacy.

This programme is one of government’s commitment in taking a zero-tolerance approach to discrimination of special needs persons.

The government has been working assiduously to implement a number of strategies to cater for the welfare of these persons. These include the $100,000 one-off cash grant and life-long assistance to disabled persons among others.

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