NEWS

PM Bainimarama Hails Blind Society For Service

It was in 1970 when a group of concerned individuals started the organisation which now provides rehabilitation, education, training and assistance to persons with visual impairment in Fiji as well as to neighbouring Pacific Island countries.
24 Oct 2020 09:27
PM Bainimarama Hails Blind Society For Service
Fiji Society for the Blind students during the society’s golden jubilee celebration at Vatuwaqa in Suva on October 23, 2020. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, hailed the noble services given to the Fijian people by the Fiji Society for the Blind for the past 50 years.

This was during the society’s Golden Jubilee Celebrations in Vatuwaqa, yesterday.

It was in 1970 when a group of concerned individuals started the organisation which now provides rehabilitation, education, training and assistance to persons with visual impairment in Fiji as well as to neighbouring Pacific Island countries.

Mr Bainimarama noted the humble beginning of the school and its ability to keep up with technology to fill in the gap between the visually impaired and the fully sighted.

He said it was the responsibility of the Government to use its resources to ensure that citizens, who are disabled or impaired, were assisted, leaving no one behind.

“The Fiji Education Grants, the Hostel Grants, the Disability Allowance, the Bus Fare Allowance and the free TELS Scholarships to students with disabilities are one way we express support as a people, not as a Government but as a people,” Mr Bainimarama said.

“If we can do more, we should, not as charity, but as means of ensuring equality.

“One day, perhaps on your 100th anniversary, the Prime Minister who addresses you will be one of your own former students. That will be a fine day and, in my mind, it is well within the realm of possibility.”

Former student, Sisi Coalala who was there to guide the Prime Minister, is a living testimony of what students from the school could achieve. She now holds a Master’s Degree and is the coordinator for disability services at the Fiji National University.

Hearts won by an 11-year-old student, Alumita Gonerogo, as she read the rights of a disabled person from the Constitution in braille.

President for the Fiji Society for the Blind, Shaheen Asgar, applauded the Government’s commitment towards ensuring equality for people with disability.

Edited by Selita Bolanavanua

 



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