Tech Era, a non-profit organisation that empowers persons with disabilities has launched an Assistive Technology Makerspace aimed at providing assistive tools for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs).
The assistive tools include 3D printed tactile braille geometry tool sets for visually impaired learners, smart braille keyboards, smart sticks, tactile maps, rotating toothbrushes for persons with cerebral palsy among others.
The makerspace is dedicated to building the capacity and skills of young African leaders to develop affordable and accessible assistive technology for PWDs in Ghana.
It was launched in partnership with Dextra, a Canadian social enterprise and engineering company and Ashesi D-Lab in Accra on Friday (August 9).
Speaking at the launch, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tech Era, Derick Omari, was optimistic about the prospects of this Makerspace and expressed the hope that the program would transform the lives of individuals with disability in Ghana.
He said this would also empower them to access quality education, employment opportunities and attain social inclusion.
Fellows of the Assistive Technology Makerspace, who had acquired substantial training in 3D designing and modeling, programming as well as lean research methodology, over a period of two weeks, pitched and exhibited prototypes of assistive technologies they had developed at the launch.
These assistive technologies included a 3D printed tactile braille geometry tool sets for visually impaired learners, smart braille keyboards, smart sticks, tactile maps, rotating toothbrushes for persons with cerebral palsy, grip devices and specialised calculators for persons with visual impairment.
Also, a specially designed software application, called IXAM which enables visually impaired senior high school students to solve and practice past West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) questions in preparation towards their final examination, was also demonstrated by a visually impaired individual.
Other prominent speakers including the Co-Founder of Logiciel, Ms Farida Bedwei, Managing Director of Kings Innovations, Nana Owusu-Achau a representative of the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Mrs Adelaide Asante all commended Tech Era for envisioning such a great initiative and encouraged organisations and the general public to invest their patronage in any ways relevant in order to promote the initiative of an inclusive society for all.