DigiDeaf 2.0

People with hearing disabilities and the blind are particularly at risk on the Internet because they can't easily comprehend digital content, hence, they are more exposed to dangers when navigating it, including information bias for political gain. Many of them want to practice in active citizenship with the communication channels available for them, but most of the time, their civic participation is limited due to problems of accessibility or to lack of access to information, particularly during electoral campaigns.
This project is an extension of DigiDeaf (an initiative that bridges the gap between deaf people and modern tech through learning their digital rights and duties as active citizens and learning how to protect their accounts and private information in the digital space). DigiDeaf 2.0, an extension of the project, will focus specifically on equipping them with the necessary knowledge to understand the online regulation of electoral campaigns. The solution consists of putting in place two awareness campaigns for these marginalized groups, in order to encourage their civic engagement during elections with equal and fair access to information, digitally.
The key activities include designing user-friendly digital content comprehensive and easily interpreted by these individuals (using tools such as sign language video, ALT text description of image files, etc.), outreaching to them and disseminating the content in different shapes of awareness campaigns. The campaigns address their role as active citizens and how they can use digital platforms to get well-informed about electoral campaigns and how to be included in the process regardless of their race, gender, ethnic background or visual/hearing impairment.
The key outcomes of the project are educating deaf and blind people in a broader and inclusive way about how to be active citizens on the Internet and helping them overcome challenges of accessibility in order to participate in elections with equality, fairness, freedom of expression and full access to information. In the longer term, the goal of this initiative is to encourage further digital citizenship for everyone, without any restrictions related to disability.
The primary partner for this project’s implementation is “Digital Citizenship”, a digital platform that aims to support local communities to understand and safely navigate the cyber world. The organization’s work covers essentially Tunisia but collaborates with partners across Africa and the Arab world for inclusive and diverse online spaces.
The key outputs achieved by “Digital Citizenship” since the beginning of DigiDeaf are mainly training sessions and workshops targeting over 30 persons with hearing issues or deafness about their digital rights and duties and how they can use digital spaces safely for civic engagement. In addition, the project has launched awareness campaigns on digital inclusion and internet safety for these targeted individuals and will continue to create similar awareness raising content on DigiDeaf App, a special application for the deaf people, with educational awareness content through all easy access mechanisms.