SWD invites applications for IT scheme and Central Fund to support individuals with visual impairment

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27th September 2023 – (Hong Kong) The Social Welfare Department (SWD) has announced the opening of applications for the IT Scheme for People with Visual Impairment (6th Round) and the Central Fund for Personal Computers (48th Round). Eligible individuals and organisations are encouraged to submit their applications from 28th September until 31st October.

The IT Scheme for People with Visual Impairment aims to provide support to non-profit organisations, non-governmental organisations, and tertiary institutions that cater to individuals with visual impairment (PVI). The scheme seeks to assist these entities in acquiring advanced Chinese screen readers, 40-cell Braille displays, and accessories/portable devices that facilitate internet browsing for PVIs. Additionally, it aims to provide subsidies to economically disadvantaged PVIs, enabling them to purchase these devices for their educational or employment needs.

Organisations that meet the eligibility criteria can apply for subsidies to purchase high-performance Chinese screen readers (up to $9,800), Braille displays (up to $36,000), and/or accessories/portable devices (up to $66,300) from the reference list specified under the scheme. Individual applicants who qualify will receive sponsorship to purchase high-performance Chinese screen readers (up to $9,800), accessories/portable devices (up to $49,600), and/or Braille displays (up to $32,400) from the same reference list.

Interested organisations can submit their applications by completing the designated forms. Individual applicants are required to obtain a nomination from subvented non-governmental rehabilitation organisations, student affairs offices of local tertiary institutions, principals of local secondary/primary schools, or the Selective Placement Division of the Labour Department (LD). The application should be submitted through the nominating organisation using the designated form. Quotations for the devices must be provided alongside the applications. Invitation letters have been sent to relevant organisations to solicit nominations.

The Central Fund for Personal Computers aims to assist eligible individuals with disabilities in acquiring necessary computer facilities for self-employment or receiving supported employment services at home. The program provides guidance and follow-up services through referral rehabilitation organisations or the Selective Placement Division of the LD. To be eligible, applicants must be users of rehabilitation services nominated by the aforementioned organisations, face difficulties in open employment, present a viable business plan that requires computer facilities, demonstrate financial difficulty in acquiring the necessary equipment, possess computer literacy, and obtain consent from the nominating organisations or the LD for guidance and follow-up services.

Detailed information about both schemes, including application forms and information notes, can be downloaded from the SWD website (www.swd.gov.hk) and CyberAble.net (www.CyberAble.net). For inquiries, interested parties can contact the Rehabilitation and Medical Social Services Branch of the SWD at 3586 3594, email [email protected], or fax 2834 7046.ShareLike