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Special-needs schools to benefit from mobile-phone recycling initiative

Published:Friday | June 20, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Scores of persons gathered yesterday for the launch of an exciting phone recycling programme that will see special-needs schools collecting unused mobile phones in exchange for brand new tablets and accessories worth more than US$700 each.

The recycling programme, which is an initiative of the Digicel Foundation, was launched in partnership with Autism Ireland to improve the learning experiences of children with autism to help them reach their full potential.

At the launch, held at the Portmore Learning Centre, the foundation handed over educational packs that included an iPad, mini speakers, stylus, protective cover and screen overlay to the Jamaica Association on Intellectual Disabilities (JAID).

JAID, which is the oldest and largest organisation in the country providing services to persons with intellectual and other developmental disabilities, will be using these tablets to teach children social skills.


Tablets have emerged as a popular and effective tool across the world for children with autism. They help them in completing their homework, and communicating with others.

Judine Hunter, the programme manager for special needs at the foundation, highlighted that as a technology company, Digicel wants to get the word out that technology is a great tool to improve the lives of children with autism.

The recycling programme will end on September 30. The foundation will handover educational packs to its special needs partners during the school year.

The Digicel Foundation will also donate $100,000 to the school that collects the most phones.