AGRA, India—With a support from Bostonian Vivek and Vandana Sharma, Massachusetts-based Vision-Aid launched a new state-of-the art Vision-Aid Digital Resource Center in Agra, India, on the occasion of World Disability Day on Dec. 3rd.
The Vision-Aid team expressed its appreciation for its sponsors Sharmas for enabling the creation of a new Vision-Aid center, bringing valuable programs to an under-served community of visually impaired students, enabling them to live with independence and dignity.
The Vision-Aid team also appreciated their technology partners in India, Gyanmantra of New Delhi, for their support in “powering” the project with their technical expertise and implementation support.
“During the 2017 annual event, Boston-based philanthropists Vandana and Vivek Sharma, generously pledged support to launch a new Vision-Aid Resource Center in their home-town of Agra,” Vision-Aid said in a statement.
The Center is located on the premises of the Lui Braille Blind School in Agra.
The Vision-Aid Digital Resource Center and Online Academy was formally commissioned by Vision-Aid President Syed Ali Rizvi, who travelled to Agra to commemorate this milestone. The new Vision-Aid center will bring to the residents of the Lui Braille School, a range of capabilities which will open up the digital world for them, the statement said.
The center includes new computers, software and network infrastructure, along with distance learning capabilities which will allow the students in the blind school to access a variety of training programs offered by Vision-Aid.
Vision-Aid said that while latest launch marked a significant milestone, it was just the start of an exciting journey for the Vision-Aid team and the visually impaired students at Agra.
“Over the next several months, Vision-Aid will train the teachers at the Lui Braille Blind School, and working jointly with them, offer a range of education including basic computer education, advanced computer courses, Spoken English courses and an orientation to MOOC’s like edX and Coursera which will open up a wide range of digital learning opportunities for these students,” the statement said.
It should be noted that until now, the students at this school neither had access to computers nor the internet, and this new resource center will be a transformative experience for most of them as they begin to realize the power of digital learning and the internet.
The resource center will also offer innovative, low cost assistive technology solutions, and offer opportunities to the students at Lui Braille Blind school to connect with Vision-Aid’s network of mentors and job-placement programs.