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Avaz’s 2021 – Looking Back

2021 has been an eventful year for at Avaz AAC. Here are some of our favourite highlights from the year gone past!

2021 was most definitely one of the most eventful years in our planet’s history. The last two years have left an indelible mark on each one of us. But one thing is certain. We have each emerged stronger from it, in our own ways.

At Avaz, we have had quite the year. We continue to work and collaborate remotely. There were many ups and downs. The downs humbled and taught us a lot. And there were some fantastic highs that told us we were on the right track with all the work we put in to bring you a world class and affordable AAC system. 

We are excited to share with you the best of our 2021 🙂

2021 - looking back

Partnership with Tamil Nadu Government

Since 2016, we have been partnering with the Government of Tamil Nadu, India. First of its kind in India, this partnership is a huge step in getting hi-tech AAC in the hands of those who need it in under served areas and communities. In two phases, 480 Avaz equipped devices have been distributed through the Government of Tamil Nadu.

2021 saw us gearing up to distribute 500 more Avaz equipped devices across the state.

Launch & Success of ACAP

In developing countries like India, professionals well versed in AAC intervention are scarce. This means that families that need such interventions are unable to get timely access to the same.

To bridge this gap, Team Avaz has collaborated with AAC experts to design a course to train speech and language professionals in AAC intervention. The aim of the course is twofold –

  1. To upskill professionals.
  2. To provide them a community where they can keep themselves updated with the latest developments in the field.

We launched the Avaz Certified AAC Professional (ACAP) course in March 2021.

To date, over 120 professionals from across India and the Middle East have been certified through ACAP. Offered online, this course has received fantastic feedback from participants in the 3 batches completed so far.

ACAP is an important way by which we are creating an ecosystem of support for people with disabilities. Next year we will be launching a similar course for parents and special educators.

Product Updates!

We partnered with EyeTech to make Avaz AAC available on funded speech generating devices (SGD). If you are in the US or UK, this is an option that insurance will cover 🙂

The Hungarian and Bangla verions of Avaz saw some really great feature updates in 2021.

And the best part. We spent 2021 working on the most requested features on Avaz AAC, improving existing features, building capacities to support multiple platforms & languages and, improving user experience.
To know more about what these are, keep an eye out for our next blog. We will share what is in store for 2022!

Avaz as a Thought Leader

We were at ISAAC this year. In our session we spoke about our successes with tele-therapy in India.

We held a series of webinars by experts to mark AAC Awareness Month 2021 in October. The sessions were very well attended and appreciated

Avaz CEO, Narayanan Ramakrishnan, was a featured speaker at the Al Noor Global Summit. Along with other eminent speakers, he discussed the role of technology in the rehabilitation of people with disabilities.

Awards in 2021

Awards are a sweet validation for the work we put in all year round. Here are some of the accolades from 2021 –

  1. We received the TN Start Up Grant 2021 at the beginning of the year.
  2. The Assistive Technology Foundation adjudged us as the Best Assistive Technology Start-Up.

Team Avaz is grateful for all that we learned in the past year. The whole team looks forward to 2022 and all the promise it holds.

We leave you with an exchange between a therapist and an Avaz user.

Q: Vanshita, do you think Avaz is useful?

A: I know challenge of communication has destroyed my life. Life changed in many ways. These frustrations bring sadness. Using Avaz has helped tremendously. I can express my feelings and thoughts. Having Avaz is blessing.

Vanshita, 28, Autistic

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