All posts by Manique

STAND MAGNIFIER FOR LOW VISION PERSONS

Stand magnifier for low vision persons

 

Sometimes it is believed that low vision persons are marginalized due to lack of assistive devices for them. The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, ICT Training Centre for persons with Disabilities assists low vision persons to be equally capable as sighted persons. Training materials are provided in large print and screen magnifier is also used to zoom the text in the computer screen. The stand magnifiers are used to make the printed document enlarge so that the low vision person could read the text easily. It can be kept on the table so that the document can be easily read.

 

Video description:

Describing the stand magnifier

stand magnifier

ManiqueGunaratne

Tel. – 0094112867966

SEVEN VISION IMPAIRED PERSONS SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETES MICROSOFT POWERPOINT

Seven vision impaired persons successfully completes Microsoft powerpoint

 

The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, ICT Training Centre for Persons with Disabilities up to date has trained 159 persons with disabilities on various courses in ICT skills. Microsoft PowerPoint is very important for a vision impaired person to make presentations for sighted audience. The course was conducted by Ms. ManiqueGunaratne. These trainees were also given training on Spoken English to develop their language skills. Ms. Vino Arumugam conducted the Spoken English training session. Up to date 31 vision impaired persons have successfully completed Microsoft PowerPoint. These trainees completed the course in September 2015. Mr. S. Pratheepan did a PowerPoint presentation at the workshop on “Community Means everyone” at Green Grass Hotel in Jaffna organized by EFC. It is really impressing to see the trainees utilizing the knowledge gained from the ICT Training Centre. Following are the seven vision impaired persons who successfully completed the course on Microsoft PowerPoint.

1 Mr. Chandana De Silva (Job seeker)

2 Mr. Pream Kumar (Job seeker)

3 Mr. JeewanLilaratne (Job seeker)

4 Mr. SayedAhamed (Chemistry Teacher at Genius Academy)

5 Mr. Sanjeewa Kumara (Job seeker)

6 Ms. SanaliSenanayake (Graduate from University of Colombo, Job seeker)

7 Mr. S. Pratheepan (Student, University of Jaffna)

We would greatly appreciate if you could assist us in finding employment for these persons. Please contact me on efc.ict.vip@gmail.com or manique.g@gmail.com

 

Picture description:

Group of trainees with Ms. ManiqueGunaratne at The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon

unnamed

ManiqueGunaratne

The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon,

385 J3 Old Kotte Road,

Rajagiriya,

Sri Lanka.

COMMUNITY MEANS EVERYONE

Community means everyone

 

It was a different experience for all participants who attended the “Community Means everyone” workshop at Green Grass Hotel in Jaffna. The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon under the ILO LEED (Local Empowerment through Economic Development) project conducted a workshop for people working in the community who comes in direct contact with persons with disabilities. There were participants from Government officers as well as from private sector. It is very important for people with non-disabilities to be sensitized on matters relating to persons with disabilities.

Ms. Sonali De Silva made the introduction to EFC Network on Disability and changing mind sets. “Disability etiquettes when dealing with persons with disabilities” was done by Ms. Maniquegunaratne. All participants learned how to interact with people with disabilities. Next two sessions were an eye opener for the community because persons with disabilities spoke on barriers they have in the community and Expectations of a person with a disability of what they expect from the society. Barriers faced were done by EFC trainee Mr. SivapathasundaranPratheepan and Mr. Vignesh explained what they expect from the society. Access to build environment was done by Ms. ManiqueGunaratne, requesting the decision makers to make public buildings access to all. Access is not only for persons  with disabilities but to everyone including senior citizens, pregnant mothers, mothers carrying babies, people carrying heavy luggage etc.

The case studies done by Ms. ManiqueGunaratne gave the participants the practical approach of dealing with people with disabilities in the community.

Mr. A. Kirushanthan, the Project Manager for the North did the ground work to make the workshop successful and Mr. Vijabasker assisted in translations. At the end of the workshop all participants signed a pledge by committing themselves to do one or more activities for all persons with disabilities. It was a happy conclusion when all the participants had a group photograph holding the pledge and committing them to include persons with disabilities in the mainstream of development.

 

Picture descriptions:

1 Group photograph of participants holding the  pledge.

community workshop group with pledge

2 Manique making a presentation.

community workshop manique presentation

3 Manique, Sonali and Vijaya at the head table.

community workshop manique sonali wijaya

4 Participants at the workshop.

community workshop participants

5 Pratheepan making a presentation.

community workshop pratheepan presentation

6 Vignesh making a presentation.

community workshop vignesh presentation

ManiqueGunaratne

CISCO International Trainer for I T E (Information Technology Essentials)

20 persons with disabilities supported by EFC to expand their businesses

20 persons with disabilities supported by EFC to expand their businesses

 

The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon Network on Disability took another initiative in the disability field. Under the LEED (Local Empowerment through Economic Development) Project sponsored by the ILO, EFC is supporting persons with disabilities to expand their businesses. The common trend in the society is to grant self-employment aid which has a charity based approach. When self-employment aid is granted there is no proper mechanism to monitor the growth of the business. Also persons with disabilities have a mindset of a charity approach. But it is very important to have a right based approach. Therefore, the LEED project grants interest free loans for persons with disabilities to expand their businesses. It is very important to have entrepreneurs with disabilities.

The interest free loans are granted after proper analysis by the EFc team. In September 2015 EFC granted loans for 20 persons with disabilities to expand their businesses. The handing over of cheques was held at a small function organized by EFC at Nellystar Hotel in Vavuniya district. Statistics show that in the North, 80% of the families are woman headed families. To address this issue the EFC team selected 9 males and 11 female business holders. The loans were granted to 7 persons with physical disabilities, 7 wheel chair users, 3 persons with hearing impairment and 3 vision impaired persons. These candidates have different types of businesses. It was very encouraging to see them involved in different businesses. The types of businesses they were doing were two candidates for fishing nets, phone repairing shop, curd business, CD shop, 3 for milking cows, manufacture of leather hand bags, 2 for poultry farming, agro industry, onion cultivation, sewing and beauty culture, baby shop, cycle parts and repair shop, 2 for vegetable and banana cultivation, and 2 for grocery shops. The project allocated loan facilities for a total of Rs. 1,600,000. All small business holders who benefited from the project were invited for the function organized by the EFC. At Nellystar Hotel, the welcome note was delivered by Ms. ManiqueGunaratne. Ms. Sonali De Silva explained about the activity on small business development. Ms. Sonali De Silva, Ms. ManiqueGunaratne and Mr. A. Kirushanthan handed over the cheques to the beneficiaries. One beneficiary spoke on her success story. The EFC team wishes them all the success to develop their businesses.

 

Picture descriptions:

1 ManiqueGunaratne handing over the cheque to a small business holder.

handing over Cheque to small business

2 Group photograph of the small business holders.

small business Group photo

3 Sonali De Silva making a presentation.

Sonali making a presentation

4 Welcome note by ManiqueGunaratne

welcome note by manique

 

ManiqueGunaratne

Executive Committee Member – Disability Organisations’ Joint Front

THREE WHEELER MODIFICATIONS FOR DRIVERS WITH DISABILITIES

Three wheeler MODIFICATIONS for drivers with disabilities

 

The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, The LEED (Local Empowerment through Economic Development) Project with the support of the ILO took another initiative to bring drivers with disabilities back to work. Research done by the EFC team showed that it is important to modify the vehicles of persons with physical disabilities and wheel chair users. There was a very big demand from the drivers to modify their vehicles so that they can be back on the road smart as ever. The EFC team selected 12 drivers with disabilities which included drivers with physical disabilities and wheel chair users to modify their three wheelers. A garage owner was selected to do these modifications for 12 three wheelers (tuktuks). Brake pads and seat adjustments were made to the tuktuks. In September 2015 these modified three wheelers were handed over to a happy bunch of drivers with disabilities at a function organized by The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon at Nellystar Hotel in Vavuniya. At the function, the welcome note was delivered by ManiqueGunaratne and Sonali De Silva explained how the vehicle modification was done. Ms. ManiqueGunaratne, Ms. Sonali De Silva and Mr. A. Kirushanthan handed over the modified three wheelers (tuktuks) to the benificiaries. One beneficiary spoke on  how he benefited from the modification which was an eye opener for the rest of the community. The EFC team made a field visit to thank the garage owner who did an excellent job in modifying the vehicles. The drivers were really happy so that now they can drive safely, earn their living and also expand their small businesses. Some drivers have already started their three wheeler hires and school hires. It was a happy moment for the EFC team to see the smiling faces of these persons with disabilities.

 

Picture descriptions:

1 Garage owner with the garage which modified the three wheelers.

Garage owner

2 Group photograph of the three wheeler benificiaries

Group photo 3 wheeler beneficeries

3 Happy driver with a disability driving the modified three wheeler

Modified 3 Wheeler

4 Participants at the programme

participants at the three wheeler modification

5 Manique welcoming the participants at the programme

welcome note by manique

ManiqueGunaratne

Vice Chair Person – South Asian Disability Forum

EFC ICT TRAINEES RECEIVE SCHOLARSHIPS FOR UNIVERSITY EDUCATION

EFC ICT trainees receive scholarships for university education

 

The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon awarded two scholarships for two vision impaired university students. Mr. AnushaDissanayake from University of Peradeniya and Ms. RasikaRatnayake from University of Colombo were selected for this scholarship. These two vision  impaired persons are following the ICT training at The Employers’ Federation of  Ceylon, ICT Training Centre for Persons with Disabilities under the leadership  of Ms. ManiqueGunaratne. The scholarships were sponsored by CIC Educational & Charitable Trust. A total sum of Rs. 36,000 was awarded to these two students. The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon wishes them all the success for their studies.

 

Picture descriptions:

1 Awarding the scholarship to Mr. AnushaDisanayake by Ms. ManiqueGunaratne

awarding the scholarship to anusha

2 Awarding the scholarship to Ms. RasikaRatnayake

awarding the scholarship to rasika

3 Group photo with Ms. ManiqueGunaratne, Mr. AnushaDissanayake and Ms. RasikaRatnayake

manique anusha and rasika

ManiqueGunaratne

Executive Committee Member – Asian blind Union

 

VISUALLY HANDICAPPED TRUST FUND

The Visually Handicapped Trust Fund Board provides numerous services for vision impaired persons. This board is under the Ministry of Social Services. This board was established by an act in 1993. The Chair Person of the board is the Secretary to the Ministry of Social Services. The rest of the board members are Director of Social Services, Representative from the Prime Minister’s Office, Director of the Disability Secretariat, Board secretary, treasurer and five vision impaired persons. Ms. ManiqueGunaratne was a board member of the Visually Handicapped Trust Fund from 2010 to 2015. The Visually Handicapped Trust Fund provides many services for vision impaired persons in Sri Lanka such as scholarships for vision impaired university students, school children, scholarships for sighted students of vision impaired parents, medical assistance, assistance for assistive devices, sports activities of vision impaired persons and many other projects related to vision impaired persons.      

 

By:

ManiqueGunaratne

Executive Committee Member – Daisy Lanka Foundation

 

 

RIGHTS BASED APPROACH FOR ORGANISATIONS WORKING FOR VISION IMPAIRED PERSONS

Rights based approach for organisations working for vision impaired persons

 

The Asian Blind Union organized a workshop on “Right based approach of organisations” in August 2015 at Hotel: Courtyard by Marriott Riyadh Diplomatic Quarter in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

There were vision impaired participants from South Asia, Central Asia, Middle East and the Executive Committee Members of the Asian Blind Union.

The following areas were taken into consideration.

Expectation sharing.

Criteria of representative organisations representing vision impaired persons.

Roles and mandates of organisations working for vision impaired persons.

Organisations priorities and human rights.

Human rights principles.

Organisations process and human rights principles.

Distinction between charities based, needs based and right based models.

Language of rights based organisations.

Organisational assessment.

Human rights based approach to development.

Civil society and rights based organisations.

Paradigm and history of rights.

Frame work tool and instruments to Millennium Development Goal.

Application of rights based organisations.

Challenges and constraints.

Executive Committee Member of the Asian Blind Union, Ms. ManiqueGunaratne participated at this really informative and fruitful workshop.

 

Picture descriptions:

1 The organisers took the delegates to a barbecue dinner at an Arabic restaurant. Everyone enjoying the dinner.

traditional Arabic Dinner

2 It was really fun when all the ladies wore the traditional Abaya dress. It was compulsory to wear the Abaya for women when going outside of the hotel.

group waring abaya

3 First day all the delegates enjoyed a traditional Arabic dinner at a traditional Cottage Hotel. It was their tradition to have the ladies in one room and men in another room. The delegates enjoyed the dinner sitting on the ground. Traditional Arabic coffee, dates, traditional Arabic food was served.

barbacue dinner

4 Enjoying the lectures at the workshop.

Workshop participant 2

5 Listening to a fruitful presentation.

workshop participants

By:

ManiqueGunaratne

National Campaigner for Rights of Women with Disabilities – Raising Our Voices for Us

THE EMPLOYERS’ FEDERATION OF CEYLON INCLUDES PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES AT THE WORKSHOP ON “COMMUNITY MEANS EVERYONE”

The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon includes persons with disabilities at the workshop on “Community means everyone”

 

The EFC LEED (Local Empowerment through Economic Development) team conducted a workshop on “Community means everyone”, at Mardap (Mannar District Differently Abled People Organisation) in Mannar district in August 2015. The main objective of this workshop was to make the community be aware of rights of persons with disabilities. 20 participants with non-disabilities were selected from different sectors of the community. These participants were from public sector as well as from the private sector.

The workshop was conducted in English with Tamil translations by Mr. A. Kirushanthan. The welcome and the “introduction to EFC network on disability” was done by Ms. Sonali De Silva. “Disability etiquettes” was done by Ms. ManiqueGunaratne. This session had a very good impact on the community because most of the participants did not know the do’s and don’ts of when interacting with a person with a disability. “Barriers faced by persons with disabilities and what they expect from the society” was done by a person with a physical disability. A Social Service Officer did a presentation on the services available for persons with disabilities. “Changing mindset was done by Ms. Sonali De Silva.

Workshops are a learning flat form for everyone. But this workshop had a difference. All participants had to commit themselves by signing a pledge. The pledge had seven areas each person could commit themselves to work on. Each person committed to do one or more thing in the pledge.

It was a happy end of a workshop with smiling faces where all took a photograph holding the pledge.

 

Picture descriptions:

Group photograph of the participants of the community workshop.

community group photo

Participants of the community workshop.

community workshop

Manique making a presentation on disability etiquettes.

disability ettiquettes by manique

Sonali making a presentation on EFC network on disability.

networkondisability by sonali @ community

 

By:

ManiqueGunaratne

Founder Members Team – South Asian Women with Disabilities Network

THE EMPLOYERS’ FEDERATION OF CEYLON ASSISTS DRIVERS WITH DISABILITIES TO MODIFY THEIR VEHICLES

The employers’ federation of Ceylon assists drivers with disabilities to modify their vehicles

 

The LEED (Local Empowerment through Economic Development) Project with the support of the ILO took another initiative to bring drivers with disabilities back to work. Research done by the EFC team showed that it is important to modify the vehicles of persons with physical disabilities and wheel chair users. There was a very big demand from the drivers to modify their vehicles so that they can be back on the road smart as ever. The EFC team selected 10 drivers with disabilities which included drivers with physical disabilities and wheel chair users to modify their three wheelers. A garage owner was selected to do these modifications for 10 three wheelers (tuktuks). Brake pads and seat adjustments were made to the tuktuks. In August 2015 these modified three wheelers were handed over to a happy bunch of drivers with disabilities at a function organized by EFC at Mardap (Mannar District Differently Abled People)  inMannar district. The drivers were really happy so that now they can drive safely, earn their living and also expand their small businesses. It was a happy moment for the EFC team to see the smiling faces of these persons with disabilities and their families.

 

Picture description:

Ms. ManiqueGunaratne handing over the document of vehicle modification to a wheel chair user.

three wheeler modification to wheel chair user

By:

(Honoured, Desha Bandu) Ms. H.K. ManiqueGunaratne