Global IT Challenge for Youth with Disabilities in Asia and the Pacific
Strengthening IT capacities of youth with disabilities is a critical requirement for enhancing their equal access to information and communication services, improving the quality of their lives and engendering full participation in society. Around 120 youth with diverse forms of disabilities from 10 Asian countries competed on a wide range of computer-based ICT skills at the “Global IT Challenge for Youth with Disabilities in Asia and the Pacific” that took place in the United Nations Conference Centre, Bangkok, from 9 to 11 October 2013.
This event was co-organized by ESCAP, the Ministry of Health and Welfare of the Republic of Korea, LG and the Korean Society for Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities.
The highest prize of the event, named “Global Leader of ICT”, was awarded to Pawin Piemthai, a young boy with visual disability from Thailand, who excelled in all categories of the competition. Other awards were given to 38 winners living with physical, visual, hearing and mental impairments in each of the categories: e-Life (for web browsing), e-Tool (for MS Office tools) and e-Sport (for online gaming).
Also part of the event, and held in parallel, was an IT Policy Seminar. The Seminar provided an opportunity for IT policymakers and experts from the same countries to share national experiences in building accessible ICT infrastructure and systems and reducing the digital divide for persons with disabilities, with particular attention to youth, in their respective countries. At the end of the seminar, a Chair’s Statement was issued calling upon Governments of the Asia-Pacific region to accord top priority in their national development agendas to ensuring ICT accessibility for persons with disabilities.