Purposely talking, technology has its vital role and limitless possibility of finding smart and practical solutions. The feature of technology span in wide range of usefulness that serves all parts of the community and certainly help making easy and leverage living condition.
As the year 2002 the WHO estimated that the number of people with visual impairment had reached almost over 160 million, this roughly estimation make us to consider that there is a need to look at this community and try to understand the sort of problems they are facing, and what kind of possible tool which could effectively help them engaging in life and practice their activates without a considering help from the community. The WHO also estimated that the high majority of the visually impaired people are from poor countries, which raise the problem to other level of complication, in this particular case we need to understand that we should look at technology that could help, but from the point of view that, it should be in the hand and affordable for everyone in need. Melting all these factors and try to get one alloy which combining all the features is very difficult task, where we should look at breaking the barriers by using high technology and curry the consideration of the financial cost. Balancing these two entities is very challenging and need a deep thinking.
Concerning this project, a powerful story could be told about emerging the ideas from the bottom of suffering, this project has come from a place where the need for help is the resonating sound wherever you go there. In fact, the project started from Aboshok refugee’s camp in Darfur, it started when the time of the crises and Mr. Abdalbasit was working as social worker 2013, which is a sort of job that kept him close to the daily problems that face the people with disabilities in such war zones. At that time a human call had its sound to let him think deeply and try to help by the available resources. As the story goes to take a humanitarian face, the idea of smart care cane has been emerged, purposely to help the visually impaired community everywhere.
Smart care tech is highly thoughtful solution for the visually impaired people, as in this case there is a need for a cane that fully function, to guide the visually impaired person and minimize the risk that they could face. There are different technological solutions that been introduced to the community of the visually impaired, as example the smart cane has been invented to replace the traditional Wight stick, where laser and sensors are used, these had work almost to solve the mobility problem, it helped effectively to far extend, but still some holes has to be covered. In the visual disability case, there are four major problems that commonly standup. The barriers or obstacle, water, calling for help, and guiding for the location of the visually impaired in case that he/she get lost. The fusion of all these factors in one part is not an easy task, but in general and by the survey, our smart cane effectively increased the level of protection for the users by 75%, and more particle than the old technology by 97%. Looking at the financial cost the cane is way cheaper by 30%, which make it more affordable to every user.
By all means the cane is powerfully effective and represent an integrated solution for the visually impaired individuals, more over it carries all the needed guides with affordable cost. It worth to mention that the project has won several international prices such as gold medal in iCAN invention competition in Canada and other internal rewards.
As a vision for the future Mr. Abdalbasit says “the promotion of such invention will contribute widely to help the visually impaired community and guarantee for them easy and flexible life”.
The chart represents the five functions of smart care cane 3D design of the cane with all its parts
About the author, Mr. Mohammed Kamal Hadi is the NEF Sudan Ambassador and a researcher, currently working and lecturing at University of Medical Science and Technology (UMST) as well teaches short courses at the National University, in the field of material science. Read more