Next step for The Swedish Association of the Visually Impaired
The Swedish Association of the Visually Impaired, was one of the many DPOs that started the nonprofit project which later became Funka. Over the years we have had collaborations and projects at different levels, and in the autumn a long-term cooperation agreement on digital development work with focus on accessibility was signed.
Naturally, it is Funka's focus on accessibility that makes the association turn to us when they want to shift their digital communication into a higher gear.
We have found that most generalist suppliers of IT services rarely have consultants with a high level of accessibility knowledge. This can create problems for us when we require support for our specific needs, says Boris Samuelsson, Communications Manager at the Swedish Association of the Visually Impaired. Our hope is that Funka, whose body and soul lie in accessibility, will give us exactly the long-term stability of the digital development work that we need. Our strategy is to make sure our partner can deliver accessibility first hand, and that they rather take in additional skills on other subjects from other suppliers, if needed.
What happens in the collaboration right now is an upgrade of the main website and also to find efficient forms of cooperation for administration and further development of the website. One interesting challenge is to create an accessible publishing environment for the blind web editors who use screen readers in their everyday work.
It feels great to work with this association, says Johan Kling, Head of Quality and Consultancy at Funka. In this assignment we have got the privilege of solving extremely important issues for people with real needs.
An increased digital presence also raises a number of other accessibility issues, not least in terms of alternative formats. That is another area in which Funka has long experience of providing constructive solutions for many of our clients.
The biggest challenge regarding web accessibility for us is to be at the forefront and to take on new technological opportunities while at the same time being straight forward and educational for those who do not use all the new opportunities. A survey we recently conducted also shows that about 25% of our members do not use the internet. It raises the question of how much of our total information we can have only on the web for example, without simultaneously providing alternative ways to access that information, concludes Boris Samuelsson.