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How assistALL App is helping Sign Language Interpretation In Kenya

by Milcah Lukhanyu
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 Signs Media Kenya Limited  has unveiled an app known as assistALL, the first mobile phone app to offer sign language interpretation services.

The App was officially launched in April and has  since been used in various sectors for instance higher education,  healthcare, judicial system, government services and finance.

According to Luke Kizito, founder and CEO Signs Media Kenya , they started working on the app in 2020 as lockdowns were effected due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The app, which was initially developed to facilitate communication between deaf persons and healthcare providers at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, is now being used in other sectors such as higher education, general healthcare, judicial system, government services and finance.

Besides  the assistALL app ,Signs Media Kenya also owns a  Sign TV, a premier sign language  broadcasting  station which propagates  social ,political ,economic and talent development of persons with disability .The station has led to increased opportunities and inclusivity for the disabled, particularly the deaf community.

The app works on per-second-billing, the user deposits money into the interpreter’s wallets using M-Pesa, Visa or PayPal to be able to access interpretation services virtually.

“Interpreter downloads the app when on data, select language and country, register details to create a profile and specialization (area good for your interpretation).” Kizito said.

 ICT and Broadcasting Chief Administrative Secretary Maureen Mbaka commended the developers for addressing a prevalent challenge in the community.

She said,“From now henceforth, doctors or nurses who don’t understand Sign Language can diagnose illness and administer medication to the people with hearing loss via this app, hence improving delivery of healthcare to this critical population,”

Kizito observed that the interpretation services are generally high around the world, as compared the charges on the app .He said that, “The cost is very low, as low as Sh30 per minute and one interpreter can serve many deaf people at the comfort of his/her homes.

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