NGO providing IT training to visually-impaired in Kolkata

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Kolkata, Aug. 12 (ANI): A non-profit organisation in cooperation with the National Association of Blind (NAB) is conducting computer courses for the visually impaired in Kolkata.

The course being provided by Amway Opportunity Foundation (AOF) has been certified by the Department of Technical Education of West Bengal.

The project of making the visually impaired persons to be computer literate was launched in August 2008.

"Basically the aim behind this project is that number one, the blind person should be computer literate. Secondly, number two, besides computer literacy, they should be trained with soft skills, which are required for the present job scenario," said Gaba, Secretary of NAB, West Bengal chapter, Kolkata.

The computers are equipped with special software - Job Access with Speech (JAWS), a software programme for visually impaired users.

One of the student beneficiaries, Gaba noted that JAWS is American software but an Indian version SAFA (Screen Access For All) being developed to provide access to students in regional Indian languages as well.

Sanjay Thakur, a visually impaired student at the centre noted that he hopes to find a job at a call centre.

"These days all the works are being done on computers and I hope to get a job in call centre. After finishing my course, I hope to get a job in call centre," said Sanjay Thakur, a visually impaired student.

"Till now I have not faced any problem in learning computer but I do not know when the training will go further I may have to face some problem but I think that due to my confidence and determination I will be able to overcome these problems," said Sneha Saha, another visually impaired student.

At present, around 30 visually impaired students are being trained at the centre, incidentally free of cost.

The curriculum modules are focused on IT and mastering the art in operation of certain basic software programmes, spoken English, personality development, communication skills and confidence building. (ANI)

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