In 2017 all nine of our students who started the intermediate ICT training in October 2016 completed the programme.
DST, in collaboration with Irish Aid, held its third graduation ceremony in April 2017. The occasion was held at the organisation’s Pultney Street office in Freetown with the theme: “Celebrating Successful Persons with Disabilities in Sierra Leone”.
Five outstanding people with disabilities who have served as role models and an inspiration to others were also presented with the Disability Ambassador Award.
The ceremony was well attended. In his opening remark, the Director of British Council, Simon Ingram-Hill said his institution has a very good working relationship with DST. The British Council frequently receive students who have graduated from DST, for a year’s internship.
The ceremony received good coverage in the Sierra Leone news:
Earlier in April 2017, we welcomed DST volunteer from the UK, Jack Smith. Jack spent six weeks teaching nine students on our second Digital Literacy and Numeracy course. This course is designed for people with disabilities with little, or no, background in formal education to write, read and gain numeracy core skills using the computer. Over the two courses we have trained a total of 18 disabled people in total, from the four corners of Sierra Leone.
To have a native speaker of English running the course was very useful and has contributed immensely to DST's work in transforming the lives of people living with disabilities in Sierra Leone through IT training and employment opportunities.
Jack left in June, and as always here at DST we had a short ceremony to mark the event, with short statements from Abs Dumbuya and Jack Smith followed by a presentation of African shirt and thank you card with messages written by his students and staff. Here’s a photo of Jack with some of his students and DST staff:
During 2016/17 DST has also provided several tailor-made training programmes for non-disabled people including staff at the British High Commission, Irish Embassy, Bennimix Food Company, Sierra Leone Ministry of Defence (MoD), and a number of other organisations and private individuals – income generated from these training courses is used to support the operations of DST in Sierra Leone.
On 16th Dec 2017 The Dorothy Springer Trust (DST) in collaboration with One Family People (OFP) and Lillian Foundation (LF) convened a Consultative Workshop on "Studying the Sierra Leone Disability Act 2011 and Deriving Key Messages from the Act". The organisations are embarking on Disability Advocacy and lobbying to fully implement the Act.
The workshop was hosted by DST and addressed the four thematic areas of Education and Employment, Health and Enabling Environment of the Disability Act.