Sabtu, 26 Julai 2008

Disability not a barrier

By Ng Suzhen
http://www.mmail. News/mm/Thursday /Hotnews/ 20080717083143/Article/index_html

INSTEAD of crying over their misfortune, five intrepid disabled young men and women have come together to set up a website design company called Image Ku Creative and are looking forward to greater challenges.

Wheelchair bound L.K.Tham, 34, one of the web programmers of Image Ku Creative which was set up in November 2007, is the only one among them who wasn't born with a disability.

"I used to be a lorry driver until I met with a motorcycle accident and injured my spinal cord."

He can't fully use his hands as the motor neurons were damage. "Well that's all past. What's the use of thinking about the past ...I am functioning just as well now," said Tham.

However, wheelchairbound graphic designer, Ku Chun Lian, 31, has one complaint."There are a lot of places in Malaysia that are not wheelchair friendly.

" She said she loses clients every now and then because she cannot go up to the client's place which lacks facilities for the handicapped.

"We had a client who asked us to meet him at his apartment. When we got there there we coudn't get to the lift because the place did not have access for the disabled.

"The potential client ended up informing us that he will look other website companies," she lamented.

Goh Kuan Then, 21, who is also wheelchair bound takes care of web programming.

"Although we have just formed the company we too can provide all things related to web design and set ups just like other companies."

Out of the five employees, the only one who is not wheelchair-bound is 34-year-old James Ong, the general manager of Image Ku Creative. James, who is born with a dwarfish arm takes care of marketing services as he is more mobile compared to the others.He joined the company in March 2008.

According to administrator, Lynn Yew, 23, who is also wheelchair-bound, they wanted to bring in somebody to do the leg work as "all of us" are wheelchairbound so this was how James got into the picture.

James is also a coordinator with the Shuang Fu Disabled Independent Living Association, which provided the initial fundings for Image Ku Creative.

"The company now is doing quite well and we are earning enough to cover the company's expenses and don't need to rely on funding anymore," said James.

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