Accessible Qatar, a first-of-its-kind in the region created by Sasol, the international integrated chemicals and energy company was awarded “Access Certified web accessibility accreditation”, by Mada (Qatar Assistive Technology Centre) for applying the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 at the priority levels A and AA (WCAG 2.0 AA). This recognition showcases that the Accessible Qatar website and mobile application have met international standards in terms of its accessible features for people with disabilities.
The unique initiative allows the disabled community and tourists to view the accessibility information about the various public venues and tourist locations in Qatar. The application and website are tailored to five disabilities: wheelchair users, mobility impaired, visually impaired, hearing impaired and learning difficulties. It features top locations across Qatar that have been audited by an expert in the field and user submitted ratings and reviews. Moreover, it also contains an accessibility services section which displays information about resources that the disabled community may need in their daily lives, such as: transportation, audio description, sign language interpretation and eAccessibility.
Ever since its debut in June 2016, the application and website have been instrumental in guiding the disabled community to the accessible venues around the country.
Phinda Vilakazi, President of GTL Ventures at Sasol said, “Sasol is proud of the recognition that Accessible Qatar is receiving. Following our South African legacy, we are committed to empowering the disabled community in finding their place in society. A crucial aspect of that is to allow every disabled individual to have a full view of all accessible venues in Qatar, in order to avoid disappointment upon arrival. Sasol has worked closely with our partners and the disabled community in the development stages of the application and will continue to do so, as we move forward with the initiative. We thank Mada for this recognition and will strive to continue to innovate more projects under the Accessible Qatar initiative.”
Accessible Qatar builds on Sasol’s ongoing Definitely Able initiative. The concept for the initiative grew out of an engaging session called “Finding the Accessible Doha” held during the Definitely Able Conference in March 2015, where disabled individuals from around Qatar, the region and the world discussed inclusion for people with disability as full members of society.
Sasol has developed this initiative in partnership with The Ministry of Municipality and Environment, Qatar Tourism Authority, Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, Mada, Shafallah Center, and in close collaboration with Qatar Social & Cultural Center for the Blind, and The Qatari Center of Social Cultural for the Deaf.
As part of its ongoing Accessible Qatar initiative, Sasol partnered with Project Qatar, the leading construction exhibition in Qatar, in order to raise awareness of the accessibility issue and to influence project developers towards making their existing and future venues accessible. Sasol and Project Qatar will also introduce a two days “Accessible Qatar Conference” on 8 and 9 May 2017, and “Accessible Qatar Awards” for best accessible venues in Qatar on 9 May 2017.
The Accessible Qatar app is available for download free of charge on App Store, Google Play store, Windows Phone Store and on the website (www.AccessibleQatar.com). More information can be found on the Definitely Able social media channels (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram), where users can keep tabs on the latest developments.