Kyivstar helps people with hearing and speech impairments within a social project named “Hear me!” In 2007 the company introduced the number for short message emergency service, so that by sending an SMS to short number, people with hearing and speech impairments can call emergency services on their own.
Within the project Kyivstar equipped operator rooms of the "101“rescue service, “102” police service and “103” emergency ambulance service with special hardware and software and provided a short message broadcast to centers of operator support on special text numbers.
Only the people signed up in a special database of the Ukrainian Community of the Deaf have access to the short message emergency service. After the sign up is completed, the user’s personal information is submitted to the database including his address, diseases, and what is the most important — his cell phone number. Each registered user receives a memo listing numbers for emergency messages and short message examples to create templates. This system will help people with hearing impairments call in an emergency through sending even a blank message. In turn, emergency operators can see on the display all the necessary information about the user including his personal data, physiological characteristics, diagnosis, and most importantly — his location.
At present, short message emergency services for people with impaired hearing and speech is already introduced in 24 towns of Ukraine including Kiev, Vinnitsa, Zhitomir, Bila Tserkva, Kozyatyn, Chernihiv, Sevastopol, Khmelnytsky, Kharkiv, Ternopil, Sumy, Poltava, Ivano-Frankivsk, Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Simferopol, Lviv, Kirovohrad, Luhansk, Krivoy Rog, Nikolaev, Odessa, Lviv and Uzhgorod. The number of service users goes beyond 5,000 people.