On the 6th of February 2017 the Senegalese Organization of Visually Impaired (AAS) had a meeting regarding “accessible documents” with The National Institute for Studies and Actions for the Development of Education (INEADE). The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) was also presented at the meeting.
The result of the meeting is that WIPO trough The Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) will give technical and financial support to the Project Books in Accessible Formats.
INEADE is willing to participate and to support the training of those involved in the process. AAS shall present the human resources needed as well as the books and other school supplies to be produced during the process.
From now on we will work on our project also as partners in the project “Visionary Learning for Africa” together with The Daisy Consortium and The International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment (ICEVI).This is the successful outcome of our participation in the 2nd WBU (World Blind Union) – ICEVI joint General Assembly in Orlando, Florida, USA from the 18th to the 25th of August 2016.
In 2015 we visited the Rotarians in Dakar and opened up the needed cooperation between the Finnish and Senegalese Rotarians. Our project is registered in the Rotary database and the tentative starting date is October the 1st 2016.
During the summer 2016 we have sent an application to the Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) / World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO). In August 2016 we are promoting our project at the World Blind Union General Assembly in Orlando, Florida, USA.
We met during World Blind Union General Assembly in Bangkok 2012. After that we started to discuss issues regarding the situations for visually impaired people around the world and more specific about the situation in Senegal and Finland. In spring 2013 we started to work on this project.
During 2013 Gunilla visited Senegal to learn more about the situation there, to learn about other projects run at the university regarding disability and to discus about this project both at the University and with the Senegalese visually impaired organization. Moussa visited Sweden and Finland in 2014 to learn about how accessible information is produced and distributed. During this stay we visited the Finnish Rotarians and a little later we sent them our application.
We have heard about the project “A year of books” started up by Mark Zuckerberg. We think it is a splendid idea to learn about new cultures, beliefs, histories and technologies. Our dream is to make it possible for all of us to read the books.
Our dream, our project is “Books in Accessible Formats for Visually Impaired (VIP) in Senegal. Our dream is that everyone on earth has the possibility to read books - that nobody needs to live the whole life without books. So it is now. As many other VIPs Moussa has studied at the University without accessible books. In Senegal there are about 500 000 VIPs and around the world we are about 285 million. We all wish to be productive and we wish to contribute to our societies and the world.
Our goal is to start production and distribution of books and other information in accessible formats; talking books, books in Braille and as accessible electronic books.
We strongly believe you wish to know more about our dream, our project – we also believe you both wish and can support the project.
With Love; Light and Happiness!
Gunilla & Moussa