Visually impaired persons should be included in the society – ANWAB
The Director of the Anglo-Nigerian Welfare Association For The Blind (ANWAB), Danlami Umaru Basharu and a member of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, say that visually impaired persons should be included in the society in terms of social inclusiveness.
Danlami stated this at the fundraising dinner, and graduation ceremony of the Resource Center for The Blind held at Eko Hotels yesterday.
He noted that for the visually impaired persons, there’s still a lot to be achieved.
“The only important thing is that government should make sure that there are laws put in place which will be implementable in a way that persons with disabilities can cope with in the society.
“Visually impaired persons should emulate other genius and not being disappointed because of their state.
“We should learn to appreciate the ways and manners which they function and see them as part of the society and not as separate segment of the society, he added.
Danlami stated that the fate of many persons with disabilities is characterized by discrimination, stigmatization, exploitation, and marginalization.
“The society must learn to support parents with persons with disabilities, to love, cherish and care for them, providing whatever they desired.
“The key to independence is to break down the attitudes and environmental barriers that prevent people with disabilities from achieving their full potential,” he added.
Dare Diaro, the General Manager, Lagos state office for disabilities affairs said that visually impaired is a challenge but its not a death sentence or the end of the road adding that to be visually impaired like other disabilities is to discover other abilities of life.
Diaro explained that ability is available to every human being using himself as an example.
“I could not move around or run like every others it means I had more time on my hand to discover other abilities it really sharpened my skill of becoming a good writer.
“In disabilities there is great potential, we need everyone to assist them in this new journey of life, there are so many impaired persons in the world and Nigeria who are fulfilled in life.
“Many of them went through the training given to them in the resource center and were able to face life challenges.
He said that INEC has been receptive in making the electoral process more inclusive for people with disabilities.
“For example the venue of elections is accessible by physically challenged persons through the awareness programs which is getting better .
The Executive Director of the Resource Center for The Blind, Temitayo Ayinla-Omotola, while giving her remarks said that the event was organized to educate the citizens on how to care for visually-impaired persons.
“We found out that many of this impaired persons find it difficult to associate with people formerly.
“What actually brought about this resource center is that we discovered that a lot of these impaired persons are on the streets begging and some are out of schools.
“Many of the schools that were available for them are of Christian based and those of the Muslim religion would not let their children go into this Christian schools no matter what we do.
“So we came up with resource center to include both faith and also the teaching of Arabic and Quran knowledge with those of Christian faith so that everybody could be rehabilitated, trained and become useful to themselves in the future.
“I wish the graduating students today the best in their future endeavors . Some of them participated in the currently concluded Jamb, some are going up to the universities and some are going back into inclusive schools.
” The training they got from us will help them, the sky is their limit and like what we always tell them don’t let anyone intimidate you that you can’t be who you want to be”.
She said that in the resource center they can study any area of science and mathematics.
“The reason they are not able to study science’s is because the resources are not accessible and available with the support of you all we hope that we will achieve our goals.
Also it is not a question of generosity it’s a question of including them and creating an enabling environment both in government,politics and society. Alone we can do nothing but together we can make a difference .
However, she stated that the Centre, has a capacity for 16 residential visually impaired students and 40 day students, provides flexible and customized programs suited for the need of each student.
One of the graduands,a 21years old Ahmad Olashide said he gives God the glory for making him to be a part of today’s graduation.
He also stated that before he came to resources center he once found it hard to identify some things and could not make use of his hand for signs.
“I chose to study mass communication in school because I love the way they speak and sound,the course is interesting and i pray that God Almighty will continue to bless and support the center.