Computer lab caters to people with disabilities

DOWNEY - Southern California Rehabilitation Services, a non-profit group that works with disables people to help them lead independent and productive lives, will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new computer lab on Wednesday at noon.The computer lab was purchased through a grant from the Department of Education secured by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard. The lab includes eight new computers along with specialized equipment for users with various impairments, such as zoom text keyboards and video magnifiers for visually-impaired consumers; ergonomic tables and specialized computer mouse for the mobility-impaired; and amplified phones for hard-of-hearing. Students learn computer and Internet fundamentals, e-mail and how to use Microsoft Office Suite 2010, which includes Word, Excel and PowerPoint. "Some of the students have never used a computer and are so excited to (see) the new world the Internet has opened up for them," said instructor Paul Lee. "Access to technology is a necessity for the growth and development of our consumers, and the computer lab is one way to ensure our consumers have access to the technical world around them," officials with Southern California Rehabilitation Services said in a statement. "(Our) goal is to open doors of opportunity by closing the digital divide. Empowering our consumers with technical knowledge enables them to research job opportunities, health issues, plot transportation routes and research just about anything pertaining to their disabilities. Most importantly, it gives them the training needed to be more marketable in the job market and to seek independence." The computer lab is available at no cost to seniors and persons with disabilities. Certificates are issued to every student that finishes the course. For more information, visit or stop by the ribbon-cutting.

********** Published: June 30, 2011 - Volume 11 - Issue 10