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Pakistan: Leading the Way for Women and Girls with Disabilities
She is often called the shining hope for people with disabilities. Abia Akram, age 30, is an educated woman, and proud of the two Master’s degrees she holds. She personifies the cause she champions: that education can be the catalyst in a world where those with disabilities are not always taken seriously. The first female with disabilities from Pakistan to win the much sought after U.K. Government’s Chevening scholarship, Akram has continued to push for change, altering antiquated notions of disability. She is the first woman from Pakistan, and the first woman with disabilities to be nominated as the Coordinator for Commonwealth Young Disabled People’s Forum and is also the chair of the Youth Council of UNICEF.
From http://beijing20.unwomen.org/en/news-and-events/stories/2015/2/woa-pakistan-abia-akram#sthash.SDtK1XSb.dpuf, February 04, 2015

A Global Tour of Transformative Urban ICT Hubs
Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are almost ubiquitously acknowledged as a transformative element to overcoming poverty. In Global South cities where limited Internet access threatens ICTs' potential, the development of technology hubs is emerging as a solution. Some hubs serve to allow the urban poor to access the Internet, train in computer skills, and reap their benefits. Other hubs cater to innovation, working with exciting social enterprises to hone their skills and professionalism to create successful businesses. In this blog post, we travel from Nairobi and Lagos to Delhi and Cairo to examine a diverse selection of ICT centers that serve a social purpose.
From http://www.huffingtonpost.com/josephine-dallant/a-global-tour-of-transfor_b_6598432.html?ir=India, February 04, 2015

Dutch Government Plans New Office to Vet ICT Projects
The Dutch cabinet has approved plans to evaluate public ICT projects more thoroughly prior to their adoption, in order to increase the chances of success. This follows the report ‘Grip op ICT’ by a temporary commission, which recommended setting up a dedicated office for evaluating risky ICT projects.
From http://www.telecompaper.com/news/dutch-govt-plans-new-office-to-vet-ict-projects--1062747, February 04, 2015

Bangladesh: Cabinet Approves National ICT Policy 2015
The cabinet has approved the draft of National Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Policy 2015 at its weekly meeting at the secretariat in the capital. The meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Talking to the media after the meeting, cabinet secretary M Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan said: 'A policy in this regard was implemented in 2009, which needed to be updated after six years,' according to a news agency.
From http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/2015/02/02/79003, February 04, 2015

The Main Benefits of Improving Accessibility and How Accessibility Benefits Society
It is safe to say that accessibility benefits all members of society including people with disabilities. Improving accessibility brings about increased quality of life; creates more independence and better social integration. It also leads to better health and can result in cost saving in a number of areas. In fact improved accessibility gives people with disabilities the opportunity for independent living within the community thus leading to lower demands for special services therefore bringing economic benefits to all members of society.
From http://www.accessconsultancy.ie/Main-benefits-improving-accessibility-how-accessibility-benefitssociety, February 03, 2015

Meet One of New York City’s First Deaf Uber Drivers
n many ways, Pin Lu is a typical UberX driver. He uses his own car, complete with a crocheted owl dangling from the rearview mirror, to ferry passengers who hail him via the popular ride-sharing app.
From http://www.wsj.com/articles/meet-one-of-new-york-citys-first-deaf-uber-drivers-1422667188, February 03, 2015

Malaysia to Learn From Japan’s ICT Disaster Management Experience
Malaysia is seeking help from Japan to use ICT for coping with natural disasters, following floods in December that displaced over 100,000 people. Japan will share technologies in preparing, mitigating and preventing disasters, Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, Minister for Communication and Multimedia, Malaysia has said, according to local press reports. Apart from the agreement with Japan, Malaysia is also in talks with the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on Disaster Management (AHA Centre) “to identify specific areas and actions that will help to enhance resilience and preparedness in the country's ICT infrastructure and services”, said Shabery.
From http://www.futuregov.asia/articles/6095-malaysia-to-learn-from-japans-ict-disaster-management-experience, February 02, 2015

Bangladesh: Eight Challenges to Children's ICT Education Identified
Bangladesh office of the UK-based Save the Children has identified eight major challenges including erratic power supply and inadequate digital contents to providing children with necessary ICT education in the country. The leading global development agency also made a set of recommendations including taking initiatives for public-private partnership (PPP) to overcome the challenges, ensuring effective ICT education for the group.
From http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/2015/02/01/78780, February 02, 2015

Ghana Gets $35 Million ICT Infrastructure for Distance Education
The Government of Ghana has inaugurated a $35-million Distance Education ICT Facility for all 10 Regional Distance Education Centres of the University of Ghana. The Centres, according to Deputy Minister in charge of tertiary education Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, comprise “state of the art modern ICT facilities that will not only expand access but improve quality and relevance while ensuring that over 3,000 Distance Education students receive fully-loaded and connected android tablets.”
From http://starrfmonline.com/1.1976295, February 02, 2015

For the Disabled, Smart Homes are Home Sweet Home
Connected appliances may be the answer for helping the elderly, blind and wheelchair users be more independent in their homes.
From http://fortune.com/2015/02/01/disabled-smart-homes/, February 02, 2015

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