NGO day 2015 sees Mauritius focus on tech to boost socio-economic growth
The E-Inclusion Foundation, which empowers vulnerable groups in Mauritius by facilitating access to ICT tools, organised NGO Day 2015 to re-group various NGOs under one roof and share valuable insights, together with a demo of the HandiCap app.
Since its inception in 2009, the E-Inclusion Foundation has been a key player in the NGO space in Mauritius and has actively contributed to the economic empowerment of vulnerable groups through facilitating access to ICT tools, as well as training.
The Foundation, in collaboration with Microsoft Indian Ocean Islands and the French Pacific, organised the NGO Day 2015, in continuation of its efforts to strengthen and support non-profit organizations.
The event was attended by stakeholders hailing from various NGOs across the island.
Dhiruj Ramluggun, Head of Training and Development at the Mauritius Employers Federation (MEF), addressed the floor regarding the support that the MEF CSR Fund provides at the National level.
The MEF CSR fund, which started in 2010, has financed CEDEM, APEIM and other NGOs, and aims to innovate along the ways it helps NGOs and the community as a whole.
When enterprises are linked with the MEF CSR Fund, it is the MEF that will manage the project being financed, thus freeing enterprises of any worry on this count.
Moreover, Dhiruj Ramluggun also discussed the upcoming Finance Act 2015 where CSR guidelines have been removed. However, he noted, “We are in a situation where we find ourselves dans le vide (or, in the void).”
He also highlighted that the framework is not harmonious and that he prefers a standardised policy to facilitate reporting. He noted accordingly that he is looking forward to an acceptable and well-outlined process.
Also, during the event, two Microsoft trainees who are also students at the University of Mauritius, presented an application titled HandiCap that they have developed to make it possible for someone with physical disabilities or otherwise inconvenienced to hire a taxi quickly and simply.
A demo was presented where a blind person was asked to use the application in front of the audience. The app works as follows: the user simply needs to double tap on his or her Windows phone and the app will use cloud services to locate a nearby taxi driver connected to the application, where the driver will accept the request and call back the passenger to ask about the pick-up location. Also, in case no taxi driver accepts the request, the request will be diverted to a hotline under which a representative will do the needful by contacting the passenger.