How does Artificial Intelligence give opportunity to people with disabilities or the disadvantaged?


Let me ask you a question, when you think of the words artificial intelligence or coding what comes to mind? For me it is a person who is a hacker, really smart in computers and very technical, were those answers similar to yours?

Traditionally, you needed to study computers and coding to become an artificial intelligence (A.I). However, in the 21st century with technology changing and evolving everyday, the skills to understand artificial intelligence or coding can be taught without those years at university. It can be taught through a children’s computer game. It’s true!

Using Scratch to develop my first animation.

Scratch is a computer programme that 9-13 year olds could use easily use. It allows children to develop and create interactive stories, games and animations which can be shared with others in the Scratch community. Creativity, reasoning and effective planning are skills that are taught through the games and are skills needed in the 21st century.

When I first used Scratch my first thought was ‘okay this is a child’s fame’ and ‘is that it?’. It took me a while to get the hang of the programme as I am not the best a technology, but soon enough I was using skills of a coding programmer. I was designing a project, problem solving and thinking critically of ideas which were then produced on screen. I built a simple animation of the music video ‘Old Town Road’ by Lil Nas X feat Billy Ray Cyrus.

For some individuals they may be hesitant to work in A.I because they are still stuck in that traditional mindset. But for people with a disability or who are disadvantaged, they may take that risk in working in artificial intelligence as it can help them find their place in society and to belong.

Allowing people with disabilities or the disadvantaged to work creates an environment where inclusion and acceptance is visible. Creating A.I opportunities for these particular individuals, companies would be following the ethical and professional practices of the workplace and these individuals can gain a sense of independence in their personal and professional lives.

Enablecode Vietnam has created an artificial intelligence program for the purpose of creating job opportunities for people with disabilities and the disadvantaged. Right at this moment their BPO program employs 40 individuals, 30 whom have a disability and are economically disadvantaged.

Old Town Road animation

These 40 individuals work in artificial intelligence in the comfort of their own homes, allowing employees to work at their own pace and saving time and resources on travel. They gain professional skills such as typing, writing and reading which are important in the work force but also personal skills such as, patience and personal drive which are just as, if not more important in the working environment.

So let me ask you this, if the technology in Vietnam can create 40 artificial intelligence jobs for people who have a disability or disadvantaged in Vietnam, imagine the opportunities that technology and artificial intelligence can give people in similar situations across the world?


About the Author

I’m from Sydney, Australia and I am a university student. I am of Samoan heritage and my family is my everything. My favourite foods are my mother’s fried chicken, steak and seafood. Don’t serve me anything with tomatoes or onions otherwise I won’t eat it. I live for Harry Potter and have a deep fear of clowns. 

My disability defines who I am but it does not define what I’m capable of. I take advantage of any opportunity that comes my way because as they say You Only Live Once. So when the opportunity to become an intern at Enablecode in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam came my way I took it without hesitation. I was scared but I did it anyway and it was the best decision I’ve made so far. 

About The Author

Hannah Mareko