Country of Operation
SummaryAuire is a social enterprise that develops and markets a color-identifying product for the visually-impaired in Brazil.
According to the WHO there are 25 million people with some vision impairment in Brazil. Approximately 29% of these individuals live with less than US$200 per month. The only color-identifier in the Brazilian market is imported from Austria and costs an average of R$1,100 (approximately US$666).
Key program components
Fernando Gil and Nathalia Patricio, two engineering students from Universidade de São Paulo (USP- University of São Paulo), decided to take part in social projects with their school and developed a color-identifying prototype to help the visually impaired identify colors. At the end of their semester in 2009, the device was presented at an exhibition for NGOs working with the visually impaired. Because products already on the market were prohibitively expensive, both entrepreneurs decided to work on their prototype and market it in Brazil at lower cost. In 2010 they were accepted at an entrepreneurship program at the Unreasonable Institute in Colorado. After their program, they returned to Brazil to launch their social enterprise-Auire. Auire is currently being incubated at Artemisia, and will start producing their prototype in São Paulo in April 2011. The identifier is estimated to be priced from R$100 to R$200 (US$59 to US$119) in Brazil. The equipment will be sold at specialized shops for the visually impaired, and subsidized through private programs at non-for-profit institutions for the visually impaired.