Finalist category: Digital Skills Award
Using a variety of programmes, assistive software, training, apps and on-going support, Hands Free Computing help make computers accessible for everyone, regardless of their disability.
Since they began in 1997, Hands Free Computing’s dedicated team of 13 trainers have provided 1:2:1 training with individuals across the UK. Often learners have disabilities which impact on their ability to use a computer – this could be because they have difficulty using a keyboard and mouse, or they are unable to use one at all. By showing them how to use speech recognition software learners can create and send emails, search the Internet and write text messages – all with their voice.
“I learnt how to open all my documents without having to use a mouse. I learnt the most effective way of navigating verbally around my computer.” – Administrator, London Borough of Ealing.
Primarily, Hands Free Computing support people who are starting work, or who are already in employment and have a physical or learning disability. Training sessions are adapted to suit their needs, taking into consideration their disability, learning style, the barriers that they face, how to overcome these barriers, and the environment that they are learning in. They currently work with the governments’ Access to Work scheme, London Fire Brigade and London Community Rehabilitation Company.
Visit the Hands-Free Computing website for more information about their work.