Over the past several months, on every Wednesday morning, a visit to the Elderly Blind Centre located at MAB, Malaysian Association for the Blind has become a weekly scheduled routine in my personal calendar. Of late too, I started visiting the NCBM, National Council for the Blind, Malaysia. My key objective of the visits was to meet and get to know new VIPs friends (Visually Impaired Persons). As a ‘newbie’ to the blind world, I realized that there is so much to learn from other VIP friends. Knowing too well that I could not turned back the clock, I had to continue to push ahead and constantly motivate myself to move forward and make the best out of life, no matter what obstacles that could come in my way. I will continue and pursue to learn or re-learn, if necessary, all the living and independent skills available.
The weekly socializing or now better known as networking, having a round of morning coffee and tea chats with a couple of VIP friends at a nearby coffee shop located near the MAB and NCIM offices has, too, become a regular outing to enjoy each other’s company and having a good chat and gossip. When Moses from NCBM said to me, “You were fortunate that you lost your sight now at this age and time”, it got me to think and reflect on the ‘timing’ of the loss of my sight. Yes, at my age it was a difficult time indeed to lose the battle fighting the severe bacterial infection. The traumatic experience and the turmoil it caused my family were beyond words of description. And Yes, I do agree, to lose one’s sight at this age and time is considered fortunate. I am ‘fortunate’ that the loss of my sight occurred in this age of technology where there are various assisted ICT facilities in helping the blind to live a normal life. It gives me cold shudders to think how in the past the VIPs had to go through life without technology to assist in their daily lives. I truly salute those VIPs who had to endure such hard and tough times in the past.
I am simply amazed with the amount of information available in the internet for the blind community. There are numerous websites to browse to gather information about the blind world all around the globe. Locally too, the cyber sphere has certainly enriched the ability of the blind community in achieving high independency in living as normal a life as they possibly can. This has created and given me lots of inspiration in moving ahead with great positive strides. I know for a fact, that there are several VIPs who are on par or perhaps, more intelligent and IT savvy than several sighted persons and I do feel proud to be associated with them. Both my VIP friends, Moses and Mano have been kind and helpful in providing me with the various website links to explore, learn and discover the beautiful world of the blind community and what the blind are capable of achieving in this modern world. I am happy to append below some of the useful sites and I am sure it will provide everyone a good insight and a better understanding of the blind community.
Some interesting websites are:
www.ncbm.org.my (National council for the Blind Malaysia)
www.mab.org.my (Malaysian Association for the Blind)
More challenging times ahead!