Sunday, June 14, 2009

L'Oréal behind grooming classes for the visually impaired

Academy-award winning actress, Sophia Lauren once said that nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful.

Helping to firm up this belief among the most vulnerable and forgotten local communities across the globe is L’Oréal, as it marks its 100th anniversary as an occasion that is geared towards making the world a more beautiful place.

So 100 charity projects in 100 countries were launched in a declaration of L’Oréal’s commitment to solidarity.

At home, L’Oréal Singapore partnered Lighthouse School and the Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped (SAVH) on Thursday to launch the Touching Colours project.

The project aims to impart independent life skills in the area of personal grooming to visually impaired individuals through customised skin care, make-up, hair care and hair styling workshops.

As teaching the visually handicapped requires specific skills, L’Oréal experts have trained the Special Education Teachers of the Lighthouse School who will impart the grooming skills to the participants of the Touching Colours project.

The modular workshop programme for students from Lighthouse School and adult clients of SAVH will focus on skincare, make-up and hairstyling.

Under the skincare module, students will be taught about understanding skin and different skin types, the importance of personal hygiene and grooming, and how to address various common skin problems.

For the make-up module, they will learn more about the bone structure, colour symbolism, how to use make-up to enhance features, make-up techniques and tips for the visually impaired.

And for the last module on haircare and styling, they will learn to understand different scalp and hair types and how to care for them, exploring different styles that suit different face shapes, how to choose from a wide range of styling products and how to create the desired effect.

Principal of Lighthouse School, Mr. Koh Poh Kwang, said: “Even though my students are visually handicapped, they too want to look good and feel good, and to be accepted. I believe that knowing how to take care of their appearances can only help them to boost their self-confidence. In addition, I believe that they will enjoy these workshops and benefit from them.”

The workshop kits, sponsored by L’Oréal Singapore will be made accessible to the participants in Braille.

S$40,000 which was raised through the efforts of L’Oréal employees in various internal activities will be used to kick-start the Touching Colours project.

New Delhi recently introduced read-aloud software for the visually impaired

The Equal Opportunity Cell of Delhi University registered 13 physically challenged (PH) students on Monday. For the first time, the forms were read out to visually impaired students through JAWS software. Deputy Dean of Students Welfare Seema Parihar said the forms had to be filled up manually. She added that the number of seats for PH students had been increased to more than 1,500 this year, but like past years, there might not be enough students to fill all up. Handbooks for PH students have also been introduced this year.

Japan: Visually impaired man voted member of assembly!

A visually impaired independent won election as a municipal assembly member here on Sunday. Shoichi Ochino, 61, will apparently be the first visually challenged candidate to become a representative of a local authority in Hokkaido, according to the Hokkaido federation of the blind.

Ochino, a manager of an acupuncture and massage clinic, was born in Chitose and lost his eyesight at the age of 9. He started his own clinic in 1973, and gained qualification as a care manager in 1998, becoming the first person in Hokkaido to pass the test in Braille. Ochino decided to file his candidacy based on the belief that "there must be particular needs only known by the visually impaired."

A total of 29 candidates ran in the city assembly election. Ochino also staged a street campaign, giving speeches as he was driven around in a campaign car. Based on his experience as a health care manager, Ochino won public support after pledging to enhance the city's assistance to patients with dementia and seniors living alone.

"The applause and cheers I received from supporters encouraged me. I want to take initiatives to solve the problems seniors and the disabled are facing," Ochino enthusiastically said.