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Techno project for blind computer users

PUBLISHED: 01:44 12 December 2001 | UPDATED: 11:01 03 March 2010

IPSWICH has been selected as a venue for a national project which aims to promote computer use by blind and partially sighted people.

The Talking Newspaper Association of the UK (TNAUK), based in Heathfield, East Sussex, has obtained a grant from the national lottery Community Fund to provide specially adapted computer equipment in 45 places across the country and Ipswich is the latest location to be added to the list.

IPSWICH has been selected as a venue for a national project which aims to promote computer use by blind and partially sighted people.

The Talking Newspaper Association of the UK (TNAUK), based in Heathfield, East Sussex, has obtained a grant from the national lottery Community Fund to provide specially adapted computer equipment in 45 places across the country and Ipswich is the latest location to be added to the list.

Sound On, the talking newspaper for Ipswich and district has teamed up with the Ipswich Blind Society and Suffolk Libraries and Heritage to develop the Sightline project in the county library in Northgate Street and the equipment has been demonstrated to a group of visually impaired computer users and volunteers.

David Miles, 61, is one of the first visually impaired Ipswich residents to use the specialist computer, which can increase the text size by up to 16 times for those with limited sight and includes a speaking facility for the totally blind user. It will also enable any visually impaired visitor to the library to have access to the electronic national newspaper service TNAUK provides.

Mr Miles said: "This equipment will be a great benefit to any blind or partially sighed person who is prepared to overcome their fear of new technology."

Eileen Damant, Chairman of Sound On said that it was another way for visually impaired people to obtain information. She added: "This will be a valuable addition to the local news service we provide each week on cassette tape for our 350 listeners."

Project co-ordinator and Ipswich Blind Society Chairman, Mark Davis urged visually impaired people of any age to give the equipment a try.

"We are also looking for volunteers with an interest in computers who are willing to help us run the service," he said.

Mark can be contacted via the Ipswich Blind Society on 01473 219712.


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