What barriers might hinder the success of your project and how do you plan to overcome them?
1. Deficiency of business culture to be involved in these initiatives either as customers, investors or donors.
2. Lack of cohesion in the disabilities sector and absence of government entities approaching the issue in a centralized way.
3. Lack of knowledge related to existing technology that we are able to develop in terms of screen reading software which allows visually impaired people to competitively perform as call centers operators.
4. As a consequence of the permanent changes of governmental authorities (political), contractual changes might appear: generally, in order to implement initiatives that affect an important part of society, according to current interests of the new authorities, hiring and the game rules could be changed if they are not previously established with a guarantee of permanence.
1. By establishing partnerships or agreements with governmental entities, we will install units with telephones and initiate call center’s operations in order to show the system’s efficiency in the real world.
2. We will be the ones who channel the information of the institutional offer that benefits handicapped population.
3. Unit and counselor’s presence will be widely spread and that way society will become familiar with technology that allows access to information for handicapped people.
4. We will boost legislation on centralization and spreading of information that benefits handicapped people, guaranteeing long-termed hiring periods and promoting the use of supplementary alternative means to these systems by sponsors or advertisement announcers.
Tell us about your partnerships
1. On international cooperation, we will obtain USAID resources, through foundation “Fundación Panamericana para el Desarrollo” (FUPAD).
2. National Institute for Blind people, INCI, governmental entity that advices and orientates actions for the benefit of visually impaired people, will give on bailment between 14 and 20 computers.
3. The Labor and Services Cooperative for Blind people, COOTRASIN, will provide the facilities to implement the CALL CENTER and we will find some of the operators among its associates.
4. Learning National Service, SENA, governmental entity that provides free technical training to low-income people, within the framework of the AGORA project, will train operators and will provide on bailment JAWS screen reading software needed.
5. The AGORA project trains visually impaired people for work and creates work spots in private companies, with resources of the “Comunidad Madrilena” and the ONCE foundation in Latin America, FOAL. Operative organizations are: SENA and INCI, while the Rehabilitation Center for the Blind Adult, CRAC, is the one in charge of managing such resources.
6. CRAC showed its will to support this initiative, since the reason for COOTRASIN’s creation 25 years ago was to become a viable possibility to offer work options to blind or visually impaired people.
7. Despite the fact that we intend the government to become the main customer of the call center’s services (with the purpose of providing centralized information related to all the institutional offer that benefits handicapped population) and in order to avoid that the operator’s only work alternative be the unstable telemarketing activity, we have made a partnership with the company that distributes massive consumer services and products, THURA.
Explain your selections
In order to initiate call center’s operation, resources from the following sources are being negotiated:
1. From USAID, through FUPAD, we will obtain nearly 60,000 US dollars.
2. Through SENA, nearly 35,000 dollars will be obtained, destined to JAWS software required (one for each operator), operator’s training, counseling and assistance for the productive unit’s constitution and strengthening, within the AGORA project’s framework which is financed by Comunidad Madrilena and FOAL.
3. From INCI, around 8,000 dollars for computers provided on bailment.
4. From COOTRASIN, nearly 6,000 dollars on six months of facilities’ use for the call center’s implementation. Only the first six months are quoted because the call center’s operation will provide income that will cover the budget in the future.
5. Nearly 6,000 dollars for the first six months, related to professional services for the development of software that makes the call center’s platform compatible with screen reading software (JAWS) and which implies management for its implementation, LORENA ANDRAUS and JAIME MAURICIO GAITAN.
How do you plan to strengthen your project in the next three years?
Income will be obtained from the sales of the call center’s services, being the main goal in this matter that the State, with its national and district (Bogota) entities and other municipal and county levels, become our main customer in order to offer information and orientation on all institutional services of governmental and private sectors that will benefit handicapped population in Colombia. This will be intended to mirror the model in other countries, without leaving out the possibility of offering call center’s general services to other customers requiring it, such as massive consumer products and services telemarketing, appointments booking, phone investigations, debt collection and others.
Another source of income is the rental of advertisement spots included in the units (which will have telephones for the users with or without disabilities to contact the call center), which will be offered to all kinds of sponsors (companies or State institutions) that require to promote services or products within the social responsibility framework, with actions related to the wellbeing of handicapped people.