A Visit to Vision-Aid’s Flagship Center at Vizag

Vision-Aid launched  its first center 15 years ago. This center has become the flagship for Vision-Aid efforts all over India. Ramakrishna and Revathy Raju had opportunity to visit Vizag to meet with the Vision-Aid family there to celebrate many major milestones. There were many things to celebrate in Vizag this year, the launch of Vision-Aid’s first residential scholarship program, the launch of Vision-aid’s extension center and much more.

Meeting the first batch of Vision-Aid Scholars

Ram and Revathy’s first set of meetings was at the LB college campus center, where the first batch of Vision-Aid Maskati scholars are undergoing their training. They had a chance to interact with each of them and hear about their journeys. The picture which emerged was consistent. Each of the scholars had made good strides since they entered the scholarship program on July 22nd. Most of them had never touched a computer before, knew little to no English and had not owned a smart phone. Six months into the program, all of them are proficient in basic computer usage, own their own smart phone and are enthusiastically learning how to use it, and have attained good proficiency in spoken English. Beyond this, they are having daily coaching in Banking and Government Competitive Exams from a professional coaching institute. They have a busy, packed schedule every day that begins with Yoga and keeps them fully engaged with learning. The feeling of deep appreciation and gratitude was evident. Each of these scholars realizes that this is a wonderful opportunity and are trying to make the most of it. Rama and Revathy also had the pleasure of meeting Anshuman Agarwal, newly hired Senior Program Manager for Vision-Aid’s Delhi project who was in Vizag on training that week. 

Inaugurating extension center at Ba Ba Pu Bhavan


With the addition of the residential scholarship programs, space has become a constraint at the existing LB college center, so the Vizag team is expanding to a new extension center at Ba Ba Pu Bhavan, in Dwarkanagar Vizag. The new space is already ready for use, and will continue to be expanded this year with more capabilities to handle the demand from students who are not residential scholars. At this time, the extension center has been funded largely by the Rotary Club of Waltair, and other local donors, including CSR support. The President of the local Rotary club was invited to do the ribbon cutting.

Visit to Nethra Blind School

Ram and Revathy visited Nethra Blind School in Rishikonda, which is in the outskirts of  Vizag. Vision-Aid has been working with this school for several years, helping them to build capacity and add new programs. A huge step forward this year was the addition of a new high speed internet connection and four new computers, all provided by Vision-Aid. The school principal informed Ram that this has been a game-changer for them. In addition, Vision-Aid helps the school run training programs in Spoken English , Computer Applications and Music training. Ram and Revathy had the pleasure of observing a live Spoken English class during their trip. The class is run in hybrid model with the central instructor, one of Vision-Aid’s spoken English faculty, driving the course virtually with the help of two assistant teachers locally. They also met with the students from the computer class and administered an impromptu quiz which they passed in flying colors and enjoyed a beautiful song from the music class.

Vision-Aid India Relaunches its Website

The launch of this new website gives us renewed hope that India will see more lives of the visually impaired being transformed.

Vision-Aid Newsletter

Vision-Aid Course Catalog

Vision-Aid Model

A Digital Accessibility Testing Testimonial | Nibin Mathews

Nibin Mathews’ journey is a testament to resilience and determination. Despite facing

significant visual impairment challenges since birth, Nibin pursued education with unwavering determination. Losing sight in one eye due to a cricket ball stroke in 6th grade and later losing vision in the other eye to glaucoma didn’t deter him. He completed his Bachelor’s in English and even secured a job with Indian Railways. Yet, his thirst for knowledge led him to pursue computer programming, which he found through Vision-Aid. With their specialized training, he mastered coding and digital accessibility testing. With their financial support, he pursued a Master’s degree. Now, as the Accessibility Lead at Bosch Global Software Technologies, he’s excelling professionally. But Nibin’s achievements don’t stop there; he’s also an international tennis champion and a skilled violinist. He attributes much of his success to Vision-Aid, acknowledging their pivotal role in his journey. His story is not just one of personal triumph but also a testament to the impact of support systems in overcoming challenges and inspiring others.

A Job Coaching for Banking and other exams Testimonial | Gautam Gulati

Meet Gautam, a remarkable individual based in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh, whose life story is a testament to resilience, determination, and the transformative power of organizations like Vision-Aid India.

Gautam’s life commenced with the diagnosis of Retinist Pigmentosa. Despite experiencing a 40% loss of sight, he persevered through attending a regular school, successfully completing his education and earning a B Com degree. His world took an unexpected turn after graduation, when, he had the major sight loss. Faced with the challenges of navigating everyday activities like driving, reading, writing print, and mobility etc. Yet, rather than allowing these obstacles to define him, he chose a path of resilience and determination. Undeterred by his circumstances, Gautam turned to technology, becoming dependent on tools designed for visually impaired individuals, including screen readers. His quest for independence led him to explore new technologies with the support of various NGOs. Through his social networks, Gautam discovered Vision-Aid India, an organization dedicated to empowering the visually impaired. Recognizing the potential for growth, he enrolled in Vision-Aid’s IBPS banking crash course, specifically tailored for visually impaired individuals, in April 2022.

Determined to enhance his skills further, Gautam pursued an additional course in mobile technology. This commitment to personal and professional growth showcased his unwavering spirit and determination.

Armed with newfound knowledge, Gautam faced the Bank of India Credit Officer exam after completing the IBPS crash course. His hard work, coupled with the right guidance from Vision-Aid, resulted in success. In 2023, Gautam proudly joined Bank of India as a Credit Officer, marking a significant milestone in his journey.

Gautam attributes his success and newfound independence to Vision-Aid India. With deep gratitude, he acknowledges the organization’s role in providing IBPS coaching and shaping his path towards independence.

A Python Testimonial

Tejas

Tejas, born with visual impairment in Mumbai, pursued his education at a Blind School. After school, he graduated from St. Xavier’s College in 2007. His quest for technology education led him to NIIT Bangalore, but job challenges followed. He worked as an HR Recruiter at Thomson Reuters but continued his search for software engineering opportunities. Tejas found his path at Vision-Aid India, where he gained certifications in JavaScript, CSS, HTML, Python, and Digital Accessibility Testing. Vision-Aid then helped him secure a role as an Associate Software Engineer at Pristine InfoTech Inc. He’s deeply grateful to Vision-Aid for enabling visually impaired individuals to learn software languages and work independently as software engineers.

Bindhu Sri

Meet Bindu, from Hyderabad. Who began her life with the gift of perfect vision? She embarked on her educational journey in a conventional school, but at the tender age of 9, her world dimmed as Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) impacted her sight. Loosing major of her vision with lot of challenges she still could complete her graduate degree in 2020 and her post-graduate degree in 2022. Being interested to pursue her career in computer programming she discovered Vision-Aid India, a beacon of hope and opportunity. Enrolling in their online certification programs, Bindu successfully completed both Python and SQL languages. Armed with these newfound skills, she opened doors to her career, securing a position as a Data Engineer at RX Data Science, a renowned company.

“All of this was made possible through the invaluable support and guidance provided by Vision-Aid India” She Says.

A HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and ARIA Fundamentals for Accessible Web Development Testimonial

Tejas

Tejas, born with visual impairment in Mumbai, pursued his education at a Blind School. After school, he graduated from St. Xavier’s College in 2007. His quest for technology education led him to NIIT Bangalore, but job challenges followed. He worked as an HR Recruiter at Thomson Reuters but continued his search for software engineering opportunities. Tejas found his path at Vision-Aid India, where he gained certifications in JavaScript, CSS, HTML, Python, and Digital Accessibility Testing. Vision-Aid then helped him secure a role as an Associate Software Engineer at Pristine InfoTech Inc. He’s deeply grateful to Vision-Aid for enabling visually impaired individuals to learn software languages and work independently as software engineers.