Getting trained the Sightsavers Dolphin Pen way

7th Aug, 2007

Following the recent launch of the Sightsavers Dolphin Pen, a crack team of more than 20 qualified trainers are now sharing their expertise with other visually impaired people throughout Africa.

Photo of the students learning how to use Mercury in Pretoria
Photo of the students learning how to use the Sightsavers Dolphin Pen in Pretoria

The Sightsavers Dolphin Pen was developed in collaboration with Sightsavers International, RNIB and Dolphin Computer Access and offers a high quality but low cost combined screen reader and magnifier on a lightweight USB portable Pen Drive. Each of the trainers has now completed an intensive course with Dolphin trainer Spencer Ellis in Pretoria and is now ready to Image of SightSavers Dolphin Pentravel to the furthest corners of Africa, to bring all of the employment, social and personal benefits of accessible IT to other blind and partially sighted people and students.

Wandemu Tsegaye recently explained at the IDP fourth Africa Forum “unemployment in Ethiopia is already very high, up to 60% in Addis, but blind people are even more marginalised.  There is a lack of awareness and they desperately need access to skills and training, as well as computers and software”.  Wandemu continued “currently training for blind people is in the low skills areas such as broom making and poultry rearing – we want to get our people trained in technology so they can participate in the world of work and education”.

Also supporting Spencer during the training was Robin Spinks of Sightsavers International who is delighted with the Dolphin partnership “this is a massive step toward inclusivity in African schools”.  He continued “Dolphin has done a lot of work to give us what we need – this software, a combined screen reading and magnification solution, which only Dolphin has the technology to supply, is further enhanced as it comes on a USB pen.  This will enable students and workers to move around with their software to places such as schools, work, libraries and Internet cafes.  If this wasn't enough, Dolphin has agreed fantastic terms, making it possible for Sightsavers International and other agencies to deliver a far reaching programme through out Africa”.

SANCB logoThe Sightsavers Dolphin Pen is only available to non-commercial and non-government organizations in sub-Sahara Africa and is distributed by local partner the South Africa National Council for the Blind (SANCB).

To learn more about the Sightsavers Dolphin Pen, visit the Sightsavers Dolphin Pen page. If you represent an NGO operating in Africa and you wish to distribute the Sightsavers Dolphin Pen in an eligible African country, please contact SANCB (external link).