In partnership with UNESCO and Qatar National Library (QNL), Sasol launched a series of films to raise awareness about the challenges that the blind and visually impaired face in their daily lives. The launch marked the International Cane Day and UNESCO-ITU Regional Digital Inclusion for Arab States.
Released as part of Sasol’s leading CSR initiatives ‘Definitely Able’ and ‘Accessible Qatar’, the films were inspired, written and starred by Accessible Qatar Ambassador Kholood Abu Sharida. They shed light on the difficulties and challenges that blind people face in their daily lives, such as selecting clothes, carrying out tasks in their jobs, and interacting with other people. The films also seek to show the capabilities of the blind and to change the stereotypes against them.
The films were shown in a public event ‘Bridging Gaps, Enabling Inclusion for the Blind’, held at QNL, which was attended by representatives from UNESCO, the Library, and the blind community in Qatar.
After the screening, a group of experts participated in a panel discussion on the issue of digital integration in Qatar. They presented innovative technologies created to enhance access to information for the blind and the visually impaired.
Faisal Al Kohaji of Qatar Social and Cultural Center for Blind, discussed the accessibility of the services they offer, including the provision of Braille printing services, free of charge. Sasol’s Jack Saba discussed the Accessible Qatar app and their efforts to make places more accessible for people with disabilities.
Dr Rashid Yahiaoui of Hamad Bin Khalifa University discussed how they are working on audio description and proposed solutions for hosting movies and accessible art exhibitions in museums, while Dr Nouf Khashman of QNL discussed key activities at the Library for people with visual impairment such as printing books in Braille and a book club for the blind.
Students from the Al Nour Institute for the Blind also did a wonderful musical performance and attendees get to print their names in Braille as mementoes.
Good Neighbour Initiatives
Phinda Vilakazi, President of GTL Ventures at Sasol said they see themselves as an ‘active partner’ and a ‘good neighbour’ in society.
It always works to entrench values like inclusion and the right of all individuals to build society. We are pleased with our partnership with UNESCO and QNL in this event, and we hope the films leave a positive impact on people.’
Sasol supports the blind community in Qatar through a number of initiatives and activities, the latest being the sponsorship of the Operetta of the Al Nour Institute for the Blind and the ‘Blind Football’ initiative with Save the Dream programme. The company also donated a new Braille printer to QSCCB to print Braille documents free of charge for the community.
Since the launch of ‘Definitely Able’ and ‘Accessible Qatar’ initiatives, Sasol made considerable progress in its endeavours to empower the disabled community in Qatar. The company launched the Accessibility Qatar Ambassadors initiative to enable individuals to play a more active role in promoting accessibility and raise awareness about issues concerning the physically-challenged community in the country. Through Sasol’s support, the ambassadors work to empower and organise activities to serve and promote awareness about the importance of accessibility.
For updates and more information about Sasol and their initiatives in support of accessibility for all, visit sasol.com.