Pinarc Disability Support iPad app assists with communication

WHEN travelling in the back seat of the family car, four-year-old Charlie, like most kids, often asks his mum “are we there yet?”

But it’s not every mum who can’t decide whether to laugh or cry when he does.

Charlie asks the question via a specialised communication app on his iPad, supplied by Pinarc Disability Support through a Telstra Everyone Connected grant.

Charlie has difficulties with his speech and would have gone through his kindergarten year with no way of communicating with his teacher or the other kids without the device.

Pinarc Disability Support chief executive officer Marianne Hubbard said more of their clients were able to access better learning opportunities via technology, such as iPads, flip recorders and video baby monitors, bought with the grant.

“As people increasingly go online for both business and social purposes, it’s important to ensure everyone has equal opportunity to develop the skills and capability to fully participate in the online world,” Ms Hubbard said.

“For Pinarc, it’s important that we’re utilising every possible tool to give our community the best outcomes possible.

“The grant helped us to purchase technology that is tailored to meet the needs and learning outcomes of students with disability and it’s great to see the positive impact this technology has made in our programs.”

Telstra Country Wide south-west Victoria area general manager Bill Mundy said the Everyone Connected grants demonstrated Telstra’s commitment to ensuring all Australians can make the most of digital technology.

“Keeping in touch with family and friends, social contact and access to employment prospects make a big difference to the quality of anyone’s life,” Mr Mundy said.

“The launch of Telstra’s Disability Action Plan, along with our recent Everyone Connected grants, demonstrates how Telstra wants to make those possibilities real for the more than four million Australians living with disability or caring for someone who does.”