It is estimated that about 100,000 people need a wheelchair in Kenya annually. Across the 47 counties in Kenya, anecdotal evidence showed that health centres and access points for rehabilitative services are not evenly distributed, appropriately staffed, and sufficiently equipped. The situational analysis showed that Kenya’s access challenges are driven by a policy gap, limited service points with few trained personnel, fragmented delivery landscape, no national specifications, standards or supply chain and limited financing of rehabilitative services and wheelchairs.
This paper on how social interactions mediate the use of mobile phones by visually impaired people in Kibera, Kenya was accepted to the CHI2020 Conference, a global event on Human-Computer Interaction.
This paper explores the personal and system factors that motivate and enhance outcomes for patients accessing a prosthetic service and using a lower-limb prosthesis within a low resource setting. This study employed a qualitative approach to explore the motivations and satisfaction of individuals with lower limb loss engaging with a prosthetic service in Mombasa, Kenya. In-depth interviews were conducted over Microsoft Teams with 10 lower limb prosthesis users and thematic analysis was applied. Five key themes emerged: acceptance, self-determination, hope, clinician relationship and perception. These findings demonstrate the importance of hopeful thinking and a supportive community in overcoming physical and stigmatising challenges. The findings further highlight the value of the service provider relationship beyond just prescribing an assistive device.
This paper addresses the gap in research on the factors that shape the experience of disability stigma including social interactions and AT use in Kenya. Via a series of focus groups with Kenyans without disabilities (Study 1) and secondary data analysis of consultations with Kenyans with disabilities and their allies (Study 2), we identify shared and divergent understandings of what shapes disability stigma and discrimination and highlight assistive technology as an influential factor that served to identify or “mark” someone as having a disability.
Although, mobile phones are universally used for communication, for persons with disabilities they become essential assistive technologies that bridge barriers to opportunities which are not accessible otherwise.
Nairobi is experiencing rapid growth and investment in infrastructure which offers great potential to embed inclusion. The city has complex urban development challenges with roads and transportation commonly cited as major challenges. This case study explore the current state of the infrastructure provision - and makes recommendations for opportunities to imbed accessibility and inclusion.
To address issues around the provision of appropriate wheelchairs in low-and-middle income countries Motivation developed a new method for producing customized wheelchairs leveraging technologies such as Computer Aided Design and 3D printing. This article was part of the RESNA 2020 Virtual Conference, GAATO/RESNA Assistive Technology Outcomes/Impact Summit.
The President also launched the new Digital Registration System developed by the National Council for Persons With Disabilities this year, aimed at addressing data gaps and curbing cases of fraud. The system will also offer a new generation disability identification card with security features to prevent potential fraud and ensure the right people get registered.
Innovations in the field of assistive technology are usually evaluated based on practical considerations related to their ability to perform certain functions. The study involved eight expert wheelchair users and five healthcare professionals who routinely provide wheelchair services in their community.
Joseph Matheka Nzioka is deaf and works in construction, plumbing, roofing and welding. He lives in Ngoloni, Kenya. Mobile helps Joseph do his work and be financially included.
Nairobi is a city of innovation - business opportunities and the start-up ecosystem is vibrant. Kenya has a strong legal framework to create inclusive cities and further disability inclusion. There is clear appetite from Government to take action represented through these legal frameworks, but there remains lots to be done.
Innovate Now has completed the 1st round of selection. We received 30 applications from 7 countries around the world. A majority of our applicants were from Kenya, with a total of 22 followed by the US with a total of 3 and one each from UK, Bulgaria, Nigeria Ghana and Tanzania.
There has been limited research to understand access to mobile phones by persons with disabilities and the impact of mobile technology in their lives. This research aims to bridge the knowledge gap and to understand the potential of mobile phones as assistive technologies (ATs) for persons with disabilities in Kenya and Bangladesh. It presents an evaluation of the gap and barriers to mobile phone ownership experienced by persons with disabilities, as well as the usage patterns of four main mobile-enabled services (voice, SMS, mobile internet and mobile money) and the role of mobile phones to enable access to basic services, such as education, healthcare, transportation, employment and financial services.
This paper presents the findings of a participatory photovoice study looking at the role that mobile phones play in the daily lives of 16 persons with disabilities in Kenya and Bangladesh.
Signs Media TV was launched in 2015 when the company applied to the Communication Authority of Kenya for permission to run a television station broadcasting in sign language and was granted the permission. In February 2017, Signs Media started broadcasting on free-to-air platforms – Signs TV and is also found on channels like GoTV and StarTimes. The platform broadcasts in Kenyan sign language with voice as an override, airing films, movies, music (both gospel and secular), and Bible interpretation. Its main objectives are to educate, inform, and entertain in sign language, by extension enhancing disability and the deaf culture, where 80% of the programs are hosted by persons with disabilities.
Innovate Now, Africa’s first Assistive Technology Accelerator is seeking applications from innovators across the African continent who are dedicated to developing mobile-based technologies designed to assist people living with disabilities.
Innovate Now has selected its first winner as part of the Global Disability Innovation Hub’s Assistive Technology AT2030 Programme
From the onset, Veezaviz set out to bridge communication barriers. Savatia and his team created a new generation of technology that enables two-way communication among deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing people. They make this possible by using machine learning-based sign language interpretation and automated avatar sign language generation.
In today's digital age, technology has become an integral part of our daily lives. From social media to online shopping, we rely on technology to make our lives easier and more efficient. However, for people with disabilities, technology can also play a crucial role in helping them to find and secure employment. One organization that is using technology to help people with disabilities find jobs is Riziki Source
Hope Tech Plus Limited is dedicated to developing innovative technologies and building tools and programs for empowerment that support inclusion in all sectors of society. They accomplish this by utilizing modern technology to produce tools that improve interaction with the physical environment and promote personal development. "The Fourth Eye" was the first product, a device that employs echolocation technology to image obstructions and warns the user via haptic feedback.
Angie has albinism and has low-vision. She is a student, an actress and a model. 'Mobile technology has helped me to learn more about albinism and access information. Also to use financial services'.
John was born blind, he is a student at Kenyatta University and lives in Nairobi. He uses his mobile device to study and live an independent life.
President Uhuru Kenyatta was the Chief Guest in 3rd December's International Day of Persons with Disabilities held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi. In the history of the commemorations, this is the first time a Head of State has graced the event.
A brilliant new report by hearX published in ENT UK Global Health showcasing innovative digital technologies and service solutions to meet the unmet need of hearing loss.
The Safari seat, a revolutionary, low-cost, all-terrain wheelchair, was born—an easy-to-repair, customizable solution, that can be manufactured with basic tools, using locally available materials and components.
As the world celebrates the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, Global Disability Innovation Hub and Amref Enterprises Limited have today unveiled the five local entrepreneurs selected as finalists to the First Cohort of the Innovate Now Accelerator Program.
Living in informality is challenging. It is even harder when you have a mobility impairment. Traditional assistive products such as wheelchairs are essential to enable people to travel. Wheelchairs are considered a Human Right.
Launched in 2019, this program heralded the purposeful inclusion of persons with disability in Shujaaz Inc’s media campaigns. We carried out a GroundTruth study to develop a profound understanding of the issue in general as well as of how it is “experienced” (understood, perceived and acted on) by our target audience. This study informed us that there is a high level of knowledge amongst young people on disability, that young people’s attitudes towards persons with disabilities depend on their visibility in their community and that frequent and positive engagements with PWDs goes a long way in improving attitudes. With these insights, we successfully rolled out a targeted media campaign in 2020 and we intend to continue incorporating a disability lens into our communications going forward.
Fans responses to stories on Shujaaz's social media platforms featuring people with disabilities
Many factors can help improve the life of PWDs by making it possible for them to participate in such activities as work, schooling, taking care of the home, and being involved with family and friends in social, recreational and civic activities. Well Told Story, in partnership with UCL, will conduct a research study to understand the existing attitudes and perceptions of young Kenyans towards PWDs and execute a 12-month action research campaign to refine the understanding of Kenyan youth (15-24) attitudes towards PWD, the influencers and the contexts responsible for forming the attitudes, and will suggest a SBCC campaign to modify the attitudes, thus, removing one of the barriers for PWDs lifestyle improvement. This reports gives a summary of findings from the Ground Truth study conducted in November, 2019.
This research article examines how young Kenyans without disabilities view people with disabilities and AT users.
Syna Consultancy is a social enterprise committed to delivering fair and inclusive sanitation solutions. While their mandate has transformed over the years, their major objective is to ensure universal access to safe and appropriate water and sanitation, with special emphasis paid to the needs of underprivileged communities.
Set up as a trial to learn if grant capital + venture building support would help African Assistive Tech (AT) ventures overcome the problems that stood in the way of scaling, the Assistive Tech Impact Fund playbook is a unique window into this UK aid funded project. It exlores the challenges, learnings & mechanisms for Assistive Tech ventures entering and scaling new markets in Africa.
Lincoln Wamae is a Kenyan inventor and engineer who has made it his mission to improve the lives of people with disabilities through the power of innovation. Using his skills in mechatronics and electrical engineering, Wamae has developed a range of electric wheelchairs that are not only functional and reliable, but also environmentally friendly.
AT2030 is gathering information about stakeholders working in areas relevant to innovation, disability, and assistive technology in Kenya. The mapping is being led by GDI Hub with the University of Nairobi, and Maynooth University and on behalf of the Government of Kenya. This resource will contribute to improving assistive technology policies and systems in Kenya.
Giulia shares her insights on her experience working on lower limbs prosthetics with Amparo and the Association for the Physically Disabled of Kenya (ADPK).