December 3, 2021
Happy International Day of Persons with Disabilities!
We just ended our 18-month long multi-media program in partnership with Perkins International and AIMS media for our trainees with disabilities. Parents and their children were excited to take part in a graduation ceremony to celebrate their accomplishments. This was a special moment for everyone, especially our trainees, as they celebrate their first-ever graduation ceremony. We were joined virtually by partners.
During the first COVID lockdown in Bhutan, when all schools were closed, our trainees began this multi-media program by carrying out simple tasks, such as painting or accessing the web to search for images. Slowly, they moved to more advanced tasks such as creating name cards, menus, greeting cards, and using photoshop to edit pictures. Today, our trainees are much more confident in their skills and can complete a given task with very little support—they even designed their own invitations for their graduation ceremony!
Samten, one of our trainees’ mothers, is very proud of her son’s accomplishments. Before the program, he had never even opened a laptop, and now he is using the laptop independently, navigating his way to the web, searching for images and music he likes, and creating short videos. She noted, “This is truly a transformation!”
We are happy to share that we will be starting Phase II of this project with the same batch of trainees. The program will now be work-oriented whereby trainees will be given real-time projects to complete and they will have the opportunity to further hone their computer skills and build their work portfolio. We also plan to replicate a similar 18-month program for a second group of trainees in the coming year.
Our project activities this year through our special education program resonate very well with this year’s UN theme for International Disability Day which is “Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world.”