Inclusive Computer Training Center Offers Critical Digital Skills for Rwandans with Disabilities
The Inclusive Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Training Center in Kigali, Rwanda, provides a critical resource for persons with disabilities: computer training. Digital skills have become increasingly necessary in the modern workplace, particularly in Rwanda. The nation hopes to triple the contribution of its information technology sector to the national GDP over the next decade. However, inaccessible software and a lack of assistive devices create barriers to developing skills, leaving persons with disabilities behind. At the Inclusive ICT Training Center, run by Uwezo Youth Empowerment, everyone is welcome and accommodated. “We have persons with different category of disabilities, and each youth with disability can join us regardless of disability type,” says Emmanuel Uwayezu, manager of the center. The center teaches computer programs like Microsoft Office, Word, and PowerPoint, and has served as an important resource for persons with disabilities, especially throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Uwayzeu, some learners have even gone on to earn raises and promotions at their jobs after developing computer skills at the Inclusive ICT Training Center.
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Esther Mukampogazi, a woman with dwarfism, is a project manager and advocacy coordinator at the Organization of Women with Disabilities for Health Promotion and Development in Rwanda (OWDHD). She holds a bachelor's degree in communication and journalism from the University of Rwanda. Mukampogazi has been working in the disability community, participating in training, meetings, and events focused on social inclusion and making a more disability-friendly world. As a youth advocate, she has worked to make positive changes in government, schools, communities, and families. Her dream is to continue being a strong disability and gender activist.
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