Australia Award Swinburne student harnesses the internet to provide equal opportunity in Philippines

Dandy Victa.jpg

Friday, 08 April 2016 5:00 PM

When Dandy Victa was set the challenge of promoting work-at-home entrepreneurship programs for people with disabilities as part of his role with the National Council on Disability Affairs in the Philippines, he knew he would need to think outside the box.

Studying a Master of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Swinburne University of Technology from 2011-2012 helped Dandy gain the skills he needed to put his plans into practice.

“Being and studying in Australia has given me a new and different perspective in looking at challenges and opportunities. It has taught me new ways to develop solutions to issues and problems at hand,” said the Australia Awards scholarship alumnus.

People with disabilities face many barriers to accessing employment in the Philippines, including discrimination, lack of transport and the high cost of travel for people with special needs.

Dandy's idea is to use the internet to enable people with disabilities to work from home.

“Considering the changing employment landscape brought by outsourcing and technology, I believe that information and communications technology and the internet have helped level opportunities for everyone, whether big or small companies, whether able-bodied or persons with disabilities,” he says.

Dandy is currently working on a resource for education providers called Work-at-Home Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide for Filipinos with Disabilities.

The snow and the beach were highlights of Dandy’s time in Australia. “Every moment of my stay in Australia was enjoyable and memorable. Experiencing the Australian way of life was really new to me, especially the four seasons in a year (winter, spring, summer and autumn) but what really surprised me was the four seasons in a day in Melbourne!”

"There was one day when we went to the beach believing that it would be sunny all throughout the day. True enough, we arrived around 12 noon, it was very hot and sunny and all the people were in their bikinis and trunks, but after an hour the rain poured heavily and almost all the people were running in different directions! Some them went to surfing and the rest of us went to hiding like crazy and laughing out loud.”



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