Call for Enrollment: Writing for the Web Training for Persons with Disabilities

Image cover of writing for the web

Do you know that writing for the web is now abound in the online job market? And do you know that persons with disabilities can work as web content writers?

Finally, ATRIEV will conduct an exciting and comprehensive training entitled, “Writing for the Web.” With the proper guidance, participants can Discover their paths in writing. Additionally, this training can allow them to be full-time web content writers and can earn a decent income right in the comforts of their homes.

Trainees qualification include:

  • Blind, mobility and speech impaired;
  • At least 18 years old;
  • At least junior high school graduate;
  • Must be Filipino citizens;
  • Must pass the basic computer literacy of ATRIEV or other equivalent training;
  • Must take the ATRIEV diagnostic tests on computer literacy, and English grammar; and
  • Must have a laptop or computer or access to the said device.

When: January 13, 2019 to February 18, 2019, Monday to Saturday
Duration: 30 days
Time: 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Where: ATRIEV Training Center, 3rd Floor, 1680 Corner E. Rodriguez Sr. Ave. and Los Angeles Street, Cubao, Quezon City, Philippines.

Limited sponsorship are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration Deadline will be on or before January 7, 2019.

What are you waiting for? If you’re interested, please don’t hesitate to contact us through the following numbers:
+632-725-4191, +632-411-1664 (landline numbers), +63977-705-9766; and +63923-616-4376 (mobile numbers). Please call between 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday only.

Manual for Teaching IT to the Blind will be Launched

Photo of Michelle Lagartera teaching trainers from UP

Twenty years ago, it was unthinkable for a blind person to use computers. Today, blind and visually impaired persons have thrived as contact center agents, virtual assistants, web content writers, programmers, web auditors and a host of other jobs with the help of assistive technology.

In the Philippines, a not-for-profit organization named Adaptive Technology for Rehabilitation, Integration and Empowerment of the Visually Impaired (ATRIEV) started it all in 1999. Going beyond the clichés of music and massage, a group of visually-impaired technology enthusiasts put up ATRIEV. ATRIEV is the first organization in the Philippines that focused on bringing technology to the blind through assistive programs and tools.

On November 22, 2018 at an Employers Forum entitled “We Can Do I.T. Using Information Technology To Expand Work Opportunities For Persons With Disabilities”, to be held at Microsoft Philippines, a digital literacy training manual will be launched. The manual is designed to help teachers and trainers in teaching I.T. to the blind and visually-impaired.

This Digital Literacy Training: A Manual for Teaching the visually-impaired is a compilation of ATRIEV’s accumulated experiences for the past 20 years. A team of competent visually-impaired trainers were assembled to write the various technical and soft skills parts of this manual. The manual covers the basic Microsoft productivity suite: Word, Excel, Access and PowerPoint. An extensive discussion on the use of the Internet, e-mail, social media and chat are included in the manual. Soft skills modules focusing on behavioral and communication skills are integrated in the technical part of the manual. From the step-by-step instruction to the evaluation rubric, all are customized to the needs and abilities of the visually-impaired learner.

Top caliber professors from Ateneo de Manila University, one of the Philippines’ premier educational institutions, helped the ATRIEV visually-impaired writers in developing and organizing their wealth of experience into a professional instructional manual.

Through this manual, ATRIEV hopes to encourage both sighted and sightless trainers to teach the blind the wonders of technology and help in bridging the digital divide.

Empowering Persons with Disabilities through IT

Image of Ms. Jaelene Cristel Mina smiling

For the past two decades, technology has tremendously changed the way we live our lives. We can do video chat with our loved ones overseas in real time. We can edit and share documents, presentations and games anywhere any time. We have our groceries, clothes, gadgets and even cabs right at our doorstep using online apps. We can earn dollars right in the comforts of our homes through online jobs. Technology has also provided persons with disabilities a tool to compete in the knowledge-based economy of today.
The CBM Livelihood Cluster composed of four NGOs working for and with persons with disabilities, in partnership with Microsoft Philippines, CBM Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University/Education Department and NORFIL Foundation will conduct an Employers Forum with the theme, “WE CAN DO I.T. Using Information Technology to Expand Work Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities” to be held on Thursday, 22 November 2018 at Microsoft Philippines, 8th Floor, 6750 Ayala Office Tower 6750 Ayala Avenue Makati.

Image of Ms. Beverly Bravo smiling

The forum’s Keynote message will be delivered by Mr. Nicki Agcaoili, Executive Director for Industry and External Affairs, Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP). The forum will showcase IT-related employment initiatives of private and public institutions for persons with disabilities. Companies hiring persons with disabilities and persons with disabilities employed in the IT industry will also share their success stories.
In the afternoon, a digital literacy training manual for teaching the blind and a website serving as an employment hub for persons with disabilities will be launched to be led by Mr. Rainer Guetler, Country Director, CBM Country Office Philippines.
The Digital Literacy Training Manual is a comprehensive step-by-step guide for teachers and trainers who want to introduce the use of Microsoft productivity tools in tandem with a screen reader software in teaching the visually impaired. The manual also includes modules on soft skills customized to the needs and abilities of the visually impaired.
The manual is written by visually impaired trainers themselves who have shared their years of experience in teaching digital literacy as well as soft skills to the visually impaired. It is a joint project of ATRIEV I.T. Center for the Blind, Microsoft and Ateneo de Manila University, Education Department.
Also to be launched is www.equals.org.ph, an on-line job and livelihood resource hub connecting Persons with Disabilities seeking employment or entrepreneurship in the Philippines managed by Foundation for These-Abled Persons, Inc. (FTI). The website is a place where employers can also post their announcement for job openings.
150 participants from various companies, persons with disability groups, government agencies and local government units are expected to join the forum to learn about best practices and new tools and resources for maximizing an untapped work force called persons with disabilities.

About the Organizers
ATRIEV, or Adaptive Technology for Rehabilitation, Integration and Empowerment of the Visually-Impaired, is a not-for-profit organization that runs a range of training programs on computer literacy, accessible technologies, transcription, and blog writing; language communication and public speaking; and life skills, such as work ethic, working in teams, and self-affirmation for the blind, their families and their communities.
De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB), particularly the office of Saint Brother Jaime Hilario Institute (SBJHI) offers free basic computer operations in certificate in computer application, behavioral training and bookkeeping to all persons with disabilities.
Foundation for TheseAbled Persons Inc. (FTI) is a non-profit organization that aims to enable emerging and existing organizations of persons with disabilities to become economically self-sufficient and to meaningfully participate through Capacity development, Bridge-Financing Assistance, Advocacy and Lobbying and Alliance Building.
Leonard Cheshire Disability Philippines Foundation Inc. (LCDPFI) is a national disability focused organization that promotes and protects the rights of PWDs in the Philippines. LCDPFI adapts a one stop shop model that provides livelihood support and employment opportunities for persons with disabilities.

Other Partners
Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.
Microsoft Philippines, the local subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation, has been constantly bringing innovation and making its technology available to Filipino businesses and individuals since 1995. As a committed and trusted partner in nation-building, Microsoft Philippines has made it its mission to fuel growth and healthy communities, as well as transform locally-based businesses and empower them to compete in the global economy.
Christoffel Blinden Mission (CBM) is an international development organization committed to improving the quality of life of people with disabilities in the poorest countries of the world. CBM addresses poverty as a cause and consequence of disability and works in partnership with local development organization to create an inclusive society for persons with disability.

Crawl, Eat, Write: 1st Food Crawl with ATRIEV’s Writing for the Web Team

Photo of the Writing For The Web team together with Ms. Rose of Malingap Central Food Hall.

Food crawl: the culminating activity for the “Writing for the Web” training. The mere mention of “food” sent the whole class in a frenzy. But then, there’s this other word, “crawl”. Banded together, what do these words mean? Nope, I won’t give you its definition, Google can help you with that. Rather, I would share with you our experience…..

The class (all twelve of us), led by our trainor, Ms. Anne Quintos, left ATRIEV IT Center for the Blind around 11 am. The original plan was for us to ride on the open cargo section of Ms. Anne’s pickup truck, wearing our yellow “ATRIEV Writing4Web” shirts (compliments of Sir Remir – thanks!) waving to the crowd, feeling very much like election candidates filing our COC’s. But we couldn’t run the risk of being apprehended by cops, so we just traveled in three groups via Grab.

SGD Coffee

ATRIEV Food Crawl at SGD Coffee

Our first stop was at SGD Coffee in Maalalahanin St., Teacher’s Village. The place is ideal if you go for peaceful ambience while using your laptops for who-knows-what, while sipping the rich, flavorful, home-grown Sagada coffee. According to Mr. Zoe Lim, Head Roaster of SGD Coffee, its name and logo came from Sagada, Mountain Province, where they source their coffee beans. Their CSR is to help the Sagada coffee farmers: from planting, harvesting and eventually, marketing/buying their produce while at the same time, preserving their heritage. In fact, SGD Coffee has won an international award in Paris last year for its home-grown coffee, “roasted and blended in its country of origin”. We had the pleasure of tasting their coffee-marinated adobo with brown rice and Etag Carbonara. Of course, the meal would not be complete without their famous coffee: black sans sugar, in order to fully appreciate its flavor.

Malingap Central Food Hall

Next stop was the Malingap Central Food Hall, about 100 meters or so away, at yes, you got it right, Malingap St. As the name suggests, Malingap Central Food Hall is composed of around 10 food stalls, all offering different kinds of cuisine: American, Mexican, Thai, Korean, Japanese and Filipino. What sets it apart from your run-of-the-mill food hubs is, first, it is covered, thus protected from the elements; and second, the food hall is envisioned by its manager, Ms. Rose Calla, as an events place to hold your symposia, fora, product launches, etc. in an informal and vibrant setting. Not to mention their wide variety of food choices: we were fortunate to sample their nachos, takoyaki, chap chae, fish & chips, pad thai, lasagna and camote fries. But most importantly, the establishment is PWD-friendly – it even has ramps leading to the comfort rooms.

Catabolic Cafe

Our last stop was at Catabolic Cafe, also along Malingap St. You might be wondering, how can we possibly stuff all those food into our tummies? Well, it helped that these restos are around 50-100 meters apart, so walking from one place to the next gave us a chance to “magpababa ng kinain”. We were greeted by Sir Christian, who was kept busy by our endless requests. Good thing we were the only patrons, as it was already 2:00 in the afternoon. The place is cozy, its interiors oozing with millenial vibe. Initially, the owners wanted to name the place “Catalyst”and by then, even had a logo for it. But they discovered that there’s already an enterprise bearing the same name, so they had to think of another name that could use the same logo. So they decided on the name “catabolic” instead, which means the breaking down of food to release energy. Since it was our last stop, we indulged on their desserts: large servings of bibingka waffle, grilled cheese & chips and fudgy brownies! Mmmmmmm!

Photos of Writing for the Web team eating desserts

A big THANKS to Ms. Anne, who planned and sponsored the whole adventure. After this experience, the concept of food crawl took a whole new dimension: it meant not just looking for a place to eat based on the menu or the ambience it imparts, but to go deeper and know the concept behind it, because each cafe or restaurant has a unique story to tell.

Over 250 Persons Trained in Assistive Technology

Photo of a blind teacher teaching a blind student to use the internet

ATRIEV, the pioneer computer training center for the blind, has provided computer training to 279 persons with disabilities, special education teachers, ALS teachers and parents of PWDs from Dagupan to Iligan in 2015.

In partnership with the NORFIL foundation, The Christian Blind Mission (CBM) and the Philippines – Australia Community Assistance Program (PACAP), ATRIEV conducted basic Windows and Android computer literacy training for the visually impaired, hearing impaired, mobility impaired and children with learning and intellectual disabilities in Regions 3, 4-A and Metro Manila cities. ATRIEV also equipped special education teachers, ALS teachers and receiving teachers from Regions 4-a and Iligan City in using computers as a tool for instruction.

Other community partners of ATRIEV include DepEd Region 4-A, the Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO), Area 1 Vocational and Rehabilitation Center (AVRC), the local governments of Taytay, Rizal, Carmona, Cavite and Batangas City, Camiling Central Elementary School, Tagaytay City SPED Center and the Alumni Association of the Iligan Institute of Technology (AAIIT).

Congratulations to our PC Operations Graduates

Batch May 2016 and their trainers

Manila, Philippines, June 9, 2016 – Congratulations to the graduates of the PC Operations with Access Technology (PCOAT) training. Members of the May 2016 batch come from Metro Manila and the three major island groups: Pangasinan in Luzon, Capiz in the Visayas, and Cagayan de Oro in Mindanao. View photos of graduates

PCOAT is ATRIEV’s core training program, covering common Office applications and a module on English language communication. It is designed for students with visual impairment who have at least Grade 4 education.

To sign up for PCOAT and other trainings, contact ATRIEV, CREATING VISION BEYOND SIGHT. Email atrievorg@gmail.com, phone: +63 2 725 4191.

Technology so that No One is Left Behind

Photo of Tony Llanes of Team ATRIEV with visually-impaired students Christian Mark Agbuya and Choleen Siquete. The students are holding the computers donated by Peter Ngo of Manila Downtown's Y'S Men'S Club. With them are other students and teachers of Camiling Central School. (photo by Jane Tangonan)

Manila, Philippines, July 8, 2016 – ATRIEV executive director Tony Llanes wasn’t at the Camiling Central Elementary School on June 21 for the earthquake drill. But the timing of his visit certainly made everyone ask, are we sure no one is left behind in earthquake drills and disaster risk management?

Team ATRIEV talked with students about the real-life application of assistive technologies. ATRIEV earlier trained 25 children in the school on the technologies. ATRIEV also talked to the teachers about the classroom application of assistive technologies.

They all said, technology is useful, but the computers are scarce.

In the visit to the Camiling school in Tarlac, a province north of Manila, Team ATRIEV handed over to the school two computer tablets donated by Peter Ngo of Manila Downtown’s Y’S Men’S Club. The donation was facilitated by Victor Lao, also of the club.

Tony said technology helps persons with disabilities adapt in the classroom and get jobs. Equally important, he said technology, such as tracking devices, alarms, and navigation software, helps ensure that persons with disabilities are not left behind in times of disaster.