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Promoting the development of special education in Rwanda through the implementation of a series of training for teaching staff of the Educational Institute for the Blind in Kibeho

The project was implemented between 12 June and 20 December 2012 in Kibeho (Rwanda), and counted with participation of one volunteer who stayed there from 3 July to 8 October 2012. The coordinator of the project was the Foundation Hear Africa, and the local partner was the Educational Institute for Blind of Franciscan Sisters Servants of The Cross.

The project aimed at supporting special education in Rwanda, and the direct beneficiaries were teachers and students of the Education Institute for Blind in Kibeho.

As part of the project, the volunteer organised a series of trainings aiming at expanding the knowledge and skills of typhlopedagogy (methods of teaching, rehabilitation of vision, spatial orientation) among teaching staff, and implementing teaching and therapy methods among the students.

The volunteer conducted a training about preparation of teaching tools and organising general development classes, attended by 92 students and 24 educators, and theoretical and practical classes related to rules of work with blind and visually impaired (92 students, 24 educators). Another training covered a specialised method in teaching of the visually impaired, attended by 7 teachers, and demonstration classes for 7 teachers and 76 students.

As a result, all members of the training group were activated, what inspired more effective use of time and educational tools, and fuller understanding of the topics mentioned during the workshops. Therapeutic and educational tools purchased by the volunteer were used to equip the specialist rooms used for vision therapy and spatial orientation. Thanks to multidimensional training, the centre staff was thoroughly trained, and the students were introduced in the teaching scheme suiting their personal needs.

As part of the global education initiative, the volunteer held 5 meetings in schools and cafes. 116 copies of a brochure “Borders of darkness. A guidebook to the world of blind children in Rwanda” were published. It is addressed mainly to teachers and students of primary school. An electronic version of the publication is available online.