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The Infocomm Accessibility Centre Organises The Tweet Meet!

The Infocomm Accessibility Centre to organise The Tweet Meet to bridge the digital divide for people with disabilities Centre aims to offer more IT course placements to people with disabilities

Singapore, 26 May 2010 – The Infocomm Accessibility Centre (IAC) announced today that it has launched a month-long civic movement titled The Tweet Meet to encourage members of the public to help bridge the digital divide for people with disabilities. The civic movement will culminate in a digital picnic at SMU Campus Green on 26 June, where people with disabilities and the public will have the unique opportunity to interact with each other physically and via online platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Skype.

This initiative is part of the ‘SOW – It’s Time To Grow’ campaign to encourage the public to Know Somebody, Grow Somebody and sign up someone they know with disabilities who has little or no computer knowledge to take up one of the many Infocomm Technology (IT) courses offered at IAC.

The Tweet Meet aims to connect more people with disabilities to the online world and encourage them to take up IT skills through this civic movement. Members of the public can participate by tweeting about the movement at #TweetMeetSG, join the Facebook group Tweet Meet Singapore and pledge their attendance at the event at SMU Campus Green on 26 June, be a volunteer to help out at the event or sign up somebody they know with disabilities who will benefit from one of the highly subsidised IT courses available at the Centre.
Managed by the Society for the Physically Disabled, the IAC opened its doors in July 2008 offering IT training to people across disability types, be it physical, intellectual, visual or hearing-related. The Centre provides basic level courses on computer fundamentals, web design, digital music and digital media to intermediate level courses on Photoshop, digital music, digital illustration and video editing.

The IAC houses Asia’s first Assistive Technology Loan Library with resources tailored to people with disabilities and the Centre also provides an IT Apprenticeship Programme encompassing on-the-job training for capable trainees so they can hone their skills in a workplace environment and enhance their employment opportunities.

As of 1 May 2010, more than 1,815 training places have been offered and the Centre aims to offer 1,000 new training places by December 2010.

“We are organising The Tweet Meet to rally Singaporeans from all walks of life to help us narrow the digital divide for people with disabilities. Many people are not aware that people with disabilities need special tools to help them learn IT skills and IAC provides these courses. IT skills have become so integral in our lives that most jobs require computer knowledge these days. We want to help people with disabilities become more independent and improve their employability in today’s marketplace by enabling as many of them as possible,” said Ms Chia Woon Yee, Director of Technology for Society for the Physically Disabled.

The month-long civic movement will culminate with The Tweet Meet event held at SMU Campus Green on 26 June from 4pm to 6pm where members of the public can tweet while enjoying a picnic in the park. The most active twitterer and Facebook participant will get a chance to win attractive prizes. There will be live music performances and opportunities for members of the public to interact digitally and physically with people with disabilities. Volunteers are also streaming in to pledge their commitment to the cause. These volunteers will help out at the event and they will also be visiting the homes of people with disabilities to help them log onto the Internet and learn basic IT skills so they can interact with members of the public at The Tweet Meet and begin their learning journey.

For more information on the IT courses offered by the IAC, please refer to Annex A. Follow us on Twitter at #TweetMeetSG and join our Facebook group Tweet Meet Singapore. For more information on The Tweet Meet or to sign up somebody for an IT course at IAC, please visit www.iacentre.org.sg/tweetmeetsg [1].