Eagles Voice International for Disability Rights, a disability-focused NGO, has trained 10 young visually impaired women in Information Communications Technology (ICT), mobility, and the use of navigation tools for movement.
The two-month exclusive training, which was organized by Eagles Voice International for Disability Rights and Nigeria Association of the Blind (NAB), was supported by the International Blind Football Foundation.
The Project Officer in charge of the training, Oluwakemi Odusanya, explained that the training aimed at enabling young women with visual impairment between the ages of 22 and 52 to integrate themselves into the larger society.
Odusanya said “in the last eight weeks, we had 10 blind and partially sighted women across different spaces in Lagos. They underwent ICT training in IT tools like the use of computers with screen readers for daily and professional use in topics like Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, and the basic use of the computer as well as communication and gestures.
Odusanya explained that the beneficiaries were also taught how to interact with each other, adding that”we also had the mobility orientation class where they had to learn how to use the white cane as a symbol of navigation around from their houses down to this place.”
Speaking about what necessitated the training, the Project Officer explained that the training for visually impaired ladies was motivated by the need to address the digital knowledge gap between women and men with visual impairment.
“I recall when I had one-year training at Leadership Training Institute in India, where I was taught how to develop and be a social change maker. I realised that there is a gap between visually impaired women and men in the community.
“When it comes to skills, we have fewer women who have knowledge of how to use computers or even how to work independently or even out to interact within the community. And this has been a great challenge,” Odusanya said.
Odusanya who has been bling for over 15 years and has seen the challenges that visually impaired women encounter in society said she is keen to expand on the support from the International Blind Football Foundation to scale up the training to reach more visually impaired ladies and for a longer duration.
According to her, the Eagles Voice in the near future, will create a hub for career development for visually impaired women where they can share their experiences and motivate each other to acquire skills.
She urged all women out there who are visually impaired to avail themselves of these opportunities to acquire life skills for employment.
The beneficiaries, who were delighted to be empowered with ICT skills, expressed their appreciation to the organizers and funders, stressing that the opportunity would help them to be self-reliant and independent.