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Inclusion and Diversity Best Practice: 1:1 Computer Training for handicapped people from Procap

August 22, 2011 - 1 Comment


One of the reasons why I enjoy working at Cisco is because of our commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility. Recently, I have been helping to put together this year’s UK & Ireland CSR report and I have to say, I have been moved and truly touched by the dedication and enthusiasm of Cisco employees to give back and make meaningful change to our local communities. From mentoring young offenders to helping orphaned children in Africa, they are engaging the power of the human network to change the way the world works, lives, plays and learns for the better.

I’d like to share with you another touching story of giving back I heard about the other day that I also think has a powerful Inclusion and Diversity (I&D) message threaded through it. In June this year, eight members from Procap, a membership organization of and for people with disabilities in Switzerland, were invited to spend the day at our Zurich office to receive 1:1 computer training from eight Cisco employees. Due to their disabilities, most of these participants wouldn’t be able to follow standard computer training so Cisco gave them the opportunity to have training according to their needs and abilities, which were diverse in themselves. Many of these participants had basic computer knowledge which they wanted to expand upon, whereas others wanted to learn everyday computer skills including how to send an email, how to use applications such as Word, Powerpoint and Excel and photo-editing.

I think this is a great example of how we can extend our commitment to Inclusion and Diversity beyond the walls of our organisation; creating an inclusive and diverse environment with our local communities to build a better business and a better world. It’s about leveraging our resources – our office space, our network and most importantly our people – to give back and make a difference to people’s lives. We received great feedback from the event – from both Procap members and Cisco employees – and there are plans to set up similar trainings in the near future.

Have you organised a similar event? Do you have an I&D story to share? I would love to hear from you so please let me know!

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  1. This is a very interesting article on the different types of skills required in the IT Industry. They range from programming to networks.