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AT&T Hosts Company’s First Cell Phone Training Session for People with Vision Loss


AT&T and AFB Join to Help People Make Better Use of Wireless Phones

Working with the American Foundation for the Blind, AT&T* announced today that it is holding its first training sessions nationwide to help people with vision loss make better use of their wireless phones. The public service initiative is an expansion of AT&T’s popular cell phone training program for senior citizens.

“AT&T’s free education program is a wonderful way to provide people with a better understanding of all the advantages available from wireless technology,” said Judy Scott, director of the AFB Center on Vision Loss in Dallas, where two-day sessions are being held.

“People of all ages can ask questions about their own phones and learn how a person who cannot see the keys or the screen on a typical cell phone use features they need or want to use independently,” she said.

“Providing useful and cost effective tips, encouragement and better access to these communication devices is very empowering for people with vision problems,” she said.

Participants will bring their mobile phones, regardless of which wireless carrier they currently use, for one-on-one sessions with AT&T volunteers. Demonstration phones are also available for people without phones. The training sessions cover everything from mobile phone basics such as controlling the volume, to checking voice mail, storing numbers in the phone’s address book, and software that magnifies screen sizes and provides verbal instructions to users.

“By making people more comfortable with their cell phones, these training sessions will help people improve their quality of life, stay better connected with their friends and family and become more productive members of society,” said state Rep. Tan Parker.

“Making daily life more manageable and more independent through wireless technology is a great way to help people with vision loss,” said Congressman Pete Sessions.

“Increasing awareness of services such as free voice calling – where you don’t have to dial the number of the person you’re calling – will be a tremendous help,” said state Rep. Mark Shelton.

AT&T has conducted similar trainings across the country through the Cell Phone Training for Seniors program, begun in November 2007, with the first training in Houston, Texas. Since then the company has worked with organizations such as OASIS and the AFB to train more than 4,000 senior citizens on how to use a wireless device.

“These trainings have proven to be very effective at providing the tips and tools necessary to enable consumers to stay connected with their friends, family and community,” said Cindy Brinkley, AT&T SVP Talent Development & Chief Diversity Officer. “We are proud to be working with the American Foundation for the Blind to expand the trainings to others who may need help making full use of their wireless phones.”

Participants will tour Esther’s Place, a premier independent living model apartment at the Center designed to demonstrate how to make life easier for people who are blind or losing their vision.

*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.


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