Tech company sharing expertise to serve disabled

January 12, 2012 10:14:18 AM PST
A Chicago technology company is sharing their expertise with an organization serving people with disabilities to help them grow their services without increasing staff and cost.

In a world of technology, accessing resources requires the talent of its people. Technology Services Group and United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Chicago hope their success will encourage other IT companies to do the same.

Located in downtown Chicago, TSG is a specialized website development business that works mostly with Fortune 500 companies.

"A lot of times we help clients implement technology they've already bought," says TSG President Dave Giordano. "We'll come in when they've bought something to make it do something else, and then we'll come in with new ideas and the technical skills to make it better."

Three years ago, Giordano got involved with United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Chicago's Infinitec's program as a board member. Instead of focusing on raising dollars, Giordano offered the services of his company.

'InfiniTEXT was our first offering sharing electronic books online for teachers teaching disabled kids," he said.

"We've done not only the Infinitec, but also the website and the InfiniTEXT sharing of the books which implemented technology to better reach out to 20,000 teachers in seven states to get access to videos and other training to help kids with disabilities, and teachers as well."

Since they started working with UCP, TSG staff members have logged over 2,000 hours.

"What we do for UCP would probably be a $250,000 effort for a normal client. For UCP, we decided to do it pro bono and it's been rewarding for us, as well as beneficial for UCP," Giordano said.

Executive vice president Peggy Childs says this effort has enabled the agency to help teachers and students.

"We have really reached out to the school to educate teachers about how technology resources can really help youngsters with disabilities really succeed academically and participate in their schools," she said.

"There is less money for staff development and professional development training, and so we at UCP have developed a website called myinfinitec.org that provides hundreds of teachers training and organization.

"I talk to other folks like myself in IT companies about the ability to donate time and effort, and focused development to help get them on the web so they can better reach out to their audience. It is actually the best way for us to contribute and it also helps us a little bit that we get to learn new stuff and keep our consultants busy between projects."

United Cerebral Palsy
Technology Services Group

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