Today, Microsoft has helped LV Prasad Eye Institution (LVPEI), a non-profit eye-health organization, open a center for computer training to the visually-impaired. Microsoft India Development Center (MSIDC) employees were instrumental to the creation of the center by donating generously during the Giving Campaign. This center is part of the general aim to provide education and employment for visually-impaired individuals.
The center will support 128 students in the first year, and teach them how to use Microsoft's Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Skype. They will also be taught how to navigate the internet, including social networking websites. Besides these basic utilities, the students will have opportunities to learn programming languages including C, C++, Java, HTML, SQL, and accounting packages including Tally and Focus. Spoken English and other useful skills are also being integrated.
The center will accomplish this through assistive software such as JAWS, MAGic, NVDA and Window-Eyes screen readers. Dr. Bealu Christy, head of the LVPEI Rehabilitation Unit, thinks this center's success will be judged in the future by the amount of students it can help get jobs and expand education.
"This program has the potential to impact the lives of many children by improving their scholastic achievement and enhancing their career opportunities and growth. In addition, this could also act as a model for other institutions in the developing world to replicate," says Dr. Gullapalli N. Rao, founder and chairman of LVPEI.
Head over to the VIA link below to read more about this venture.