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“Global IT Challenge for Youth with Disabilities, 2018” is being organised by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) under Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment here during 9-11 November, 2018.This year, India is hosting the event in collaboration with Government of Korea and Rehabilitation International (RI).The Global IT Challenge for disability is a capacity building project that helps youth with disabilities to overcome their limitations and challenges for a better future through access to ICT. It will alleviate the digital divide and expand participation of youth with disabilities in the society. It propagates implementation of United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) – Article 21 relates to access to information.
Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot, Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment will inaugurate the event on 9th November, 2018 and will present awards to the winners on 11th November, 2018. Participation of high Government functionaries at the event will showcase the commitment of Government of India at the political and administrative level towards creating an environment inclusive of persons with disabilities through application of ICT and also to fulfil our international obligations enshrined under UNCRPD and SDGs.
The competition will be held on the following aspects:-
- E-tool (competition on application of MS-Excel, MS-Word etc) – individual event.
- E-life map challenge (ability to respond to specific situation) – individual event
- E-creative (ability to create animated story or game) – group event (country wise)
- E-content (ability to make video) – group event (country wise)
About 100 youth with disabilities in the age group of 13-21 years in the category of visual disability, hearing disability, locomotor disability and developmental disorder (intellectual disability/MR) from 18 countries namely, Indonesia, China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Mongolia, Cambodia, Laos, Philippines, Korea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, UAE, India and UK. 12 participants in three teams will be representing India. These youths with disabilities have been selected on the basis of National IT Challenge conducted through National Institute of Technology, Kurukshetra in June, 2018. The participants will also be accompanied by one official chaperone and one non-official chaperone from each country to serve as escorts for the participating youths with disabilities.
Participation of high Government functionaries at the event will showcase the commitment of Government of India at the political and administrative level towards creating an environment inclusive of persons with disabilities through application of ICT and also to fulfil our international obligations enshrined under UNCRPD and SDGs.
There are about 1 billion i.e. about 15% of the world population persons with disabilities. Majority of this population live in developing countries with low ICT development indexes. Because of this information divide, persons with disabilities are being excluded from society suffering inequality and poverty.The Global IT Challenge was initially designed to enhance the information utilisation skill of youths with disabilities (in the category of visual disability, hearing disability, locomotor disability and developmental disorder) and to encourage their social participation.The event started in the year 1992 in Korea. Subsequently it expanded to the neighbouring countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region and since 2011 it has become a global event.
In 2011 the event was held in Hanoi, Vietnam followed by Incheon (South Korea in 2012) Bangkok, Thailand in 2013, Busan, South Korea in 2014, Jakarta, Indonesia in 2015, Yangzhou, Jiangsu, China in 2016 and Hanoi, Vietnam in 2017. The last event at Hanoi was attended by youth with disabilities from 18 countries namely India, Indonesia, China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Mongolia, Cambodia, Laos, Philippines, Korea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan and Brunei.
The Korean Society for Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities was the main organiser for hosting GITC up to 2016. Since 2017, Rehabilitation International Korea (RI) has been associated with this project with support from the host countries as well as UNESCAP. The Korean organisation is headed by the eminent personalities in Korea and it has members/advocacy groups representing persons with disabilities. It has support from the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of Korea, Ministry of Science & IT and Future Planning, Korea, Korea Communications Commission and other sponsoring private organisations.As stated above, India is the main host in collaboration with Government of Korea and Rehabilitation International (RI).
Some of the prominent personalities from Korea who would be representing Rehabilitation International, Korea, the main organiser are:-
- Dr. In Kyu Kim, President of Rehabilitation International, Korea
- Mr Joon Oh, Professor at Kyung Hee University
- Mr Yanghee Choi, Professor at Seoul National University
- Mr Bong-kil Shin, Ambassador of the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the socialist Republic of India
- Mr Hyun-Don Bae, Advise on ICT Development of National IT Industry Promotion Agency, Korea
- Mr Jang-woo Kwon, Chief of the Technical Committee of GITC
- Mr Nagesh Kumar, Director of Social Development Division, UNESCAP