Samy Gamil

Ashoka Fellow

Citation

This profile was prepared when Samy Gamil was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2007.
The New Idea
Samy is improving the social and economic status of the deaf and hearing impaired community in Egypt to further incorporate them into the fabric of society. He provides them with the services, facilities, and tools necessary to become active, competitive contributors to the highly regarded field of IT. Samy is fostering respect and recognition for the deaf among the community at large, as well as helping the deaf build a stronger sense of self assurance.
Samy has developed a multifaceted approach to achieve his objective. First, he has created an IT education program for the deaf, featuring materials and literature translated to sign language. He provides training in computer skills, such as programming, and develops IT courses and curricula. He also trains IT teachers to work with the deaf and has effectively created a training of trainers program to enable the growth of this group of educators.
Another aspect of Samy's approach is the development of IT literature and programs in sign language. For the first time in Egypt, these materials are being translated for the deaf and hearing impaired: An innovative step that expands their access to this important sector. Samy also works to ensure job placement for deaf individuals who have been trained in IT, making them competitive members of the labor market.
Finally, in an effort to institutionalize and replicate his model and idea, Samy is engaging several government ministries, official education centers, training institutions and COs in various aspects of his program, encouraging them to support the integration of the deaf in mainstream IT and technology education. His program will allow all organizations, which are required by law to employ 5 percent of people with disabilities, to hire highly skilled deaf people who can contribute to any IT group.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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