The main mission of the Ghana Blind Union is to ensure all blind and partially sighted persons in this Nation have full and complete inclusion into all facets of Society.The ability of the individual to move about at will, is crucial to this process. This is why the white cane is so important in the assertion of the independence of the blind individual.Although GBU is equipped to provide training, unfortunately, we are not able to meet the cost of providing canes for all our trainees.The main aim of this project is to provide mobility training and white canes to our membership.
Although every blind person needs this essential mobility tool, most persons are unable to afford it.In greater Accra alone, GBU has 321 registered members. Out of this number, 55%do not have mobility canes.We would be most grateful to have you as a partner in this project. With your kind assistance, GBU would be able to provide these persons with white canes to give them independence.
TThe Ghana Blind Union in October 2002 put up a model regional Computer Learning Centre to provide Blind and Partially Sighted persons with Basic computer literacy skills.
In an attempt to level the playing field in all spheres of endeavours for all BPS persons in Ghana in particular and the West African sub-region in general.
The GBU centre has managed to set up a series of training courses with the purpose of providing the students with skills in information communication technology.
This project is the first of its kind in West Africa. The project is also geared at becoming a principal distribution centre of equipment and adaptive technology for blind persons in West Africa.
In pursuance of these objectives, satellite centres have been established in strategic locations across the country.
This is geared towards providing increased access to information, communication, equalization of opportunities pertaining to education and employment as well as leisure. Thus enhancing comprehensive social inclusion.
The target group is largely made up of educated Blind persons who are either employed or receiving education from the tertiary levels as well as those in the secondary and basic levels.
Though The estimated target group in Ghana alone numbers over two thousand four hundred BPS persons in all, the centre could only train on average about sixty-four (64) in a given year.
This, therefore, left a huge number of BPS persons without the services of the Access Technology project in a timely manner.
In order to address this situation, the main stakeholders which included the Ghana Blind Union and The Special Education Division of the Ghana Education Service moved beyond the model regional centre to set up what has been referred to as satellite centres in various educational institutions across the length and breadth of the country.
This is due to the fact that the educational institutions at the various levels hold close to 80% of the target population.
From 2005 to 2008 therefore, the centre in collaboration with various institutions from the tertiary to the basic level of education set up eight (8) of these satellite centres around the country in addition to improving the services at the model regional centre.
In order to improve the services rendered by the access Technology project and build upon lessons learnt from previous experiences, new strategies will be employed that factor in reflection and learning.
One significant feature of the next phase of the project is the importance attached to advocacy and awareness-raising on issues pertaining to access technology in order to create and ensure an enabling and conducive environment.
A continuation of this project will be highly beneficial since it will provide an opportunity to reach more of the targeted group. Furthermore, relevant issues which were not given adequate attention in the first phase of the project WILL BE COMNPREHENSIVELY DEALT WITH AT THIS STAGE.
Additionally, it will be important to note that based on the demonstrated importance and advantage that access technology plays in the social inclusion of BpS persons, there is an overwhelming demand for access technology among the entire BPS population across the length and breadth of the country..
Community-Based Rehabilitation (CBR) is a response to the need for adequate and appropriate services to be made available to a great majority of the disabled population.It is a strategy for enhancing the quality of life of the disabled. CBR may be defined, according to three United Nations Agencies, ILO, UNESCO, and WHO, as a “strategy within community development for the rehabilitation, equalization of opportunities and social integration of all people with disabilities.
CBR is implemented through the combined efforts of disabled people themselves, their families and communities and the appropriate health, educational and social services” (WHO, 1994)
We would be most grateful to have you as a partner in this project. With your kind assistance, GBU would be able to provide these persons with white canes to give them independence.