Digital technologies are affecting most areas of human lives including economy, work, finance or transportation. One of the current challenges of digitization in Cambodia is to ensure that these technologies will have a positive impact on the entire society.
How can we bring this positive change for everyone including vulnerable groups?
For Grab, the answer is a new programme ‘Break The Silence’, an initiative to make the ride-hailing platform more accessible and inclusive. The initiative, launched under the ‘Grab for Good’ social impact programme, aims to open up more income opportunities for the deaf and Persons with Disabilities.
“Grab is committed to promoting digital empowerment, accessibility and inclusion for all in Southeast Asia.(…) We want everyone, regardless of background or ability, to have access to financial independence and have peace of mind whenever they use our products and services,” said Hashim Alkaff, Country Head of Grab Cambodia.
Regionally, the programme has attracted 600 deaf driver-partners so far. In Cambodia, Grab will work with the Deaf Development Programme (DDP) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Cambodia to implement the project.
As part of ‘Break the Silence’, Grab will include message prompts to alert passengers that they have been paired with a deaf partner, GrabChat feature for better communication, in-vehicle communication flip cards and training and on-boarding materials with local subtitles and sign language for driver partners.
Driver partners welcomed the new initiative “I initially felt worried about being Grab driver-partner because purchasing a tuk tuk was very expensive and I wasn’t sure if I could afford the monthly installment. However, I was encouraged by family and friends to sign up with Grab as a tuk tuk driver. Now, I’m happy with the income I bring home, which also allows me to cover my monthly tuk tuk installments,” commented Kong Sovanley, a deaf Grab driver-partner.
Together with ‘Break the Silence’, Grab also launched an Anti-Human Trafficking training programme for driver-partners, to raise awareness about human trafficking.