Belated Dussehra greetings and advance greetings for Diwali – the festival of lights. Amid the festive season, did you know that today, October 15th , is “White Cane Awareness Day”, to increase awareness of the use of white canes by the visually impaired to navigate safely. In our Vision-Aid Agra center, this day was celebrated with the distribution of “Smart Canes” to the visually impaired.
The event was jointly organized by the Vision-Aid India and Perkins India team in Agra, with whom we have forged a very fruitful alliance in the region for the benefit of children with visual impairment and multiple disabilities (MDVI). The goal of the project “Project IDI” is to identify such vulnerable children and offer support to them. The teams jointly conduct meticulous door to door screening in the entire Agra region reaching many of the most vulnerable segment of the population from the poorest sections of society in the region, with screening and life-changing interventions.
In the most recently concluded quarter alone (July – Sept 2022) the team has screened a total of 2513,children, of which 86 children were found to be profoundly disabled with MDVI and 160 children were found to be “at-risk”. The team helps identified children and families obtain disability certificates and Aadhar cards from the government, and also provides equipment and assistive devices in collaboration with the Agra local Govt.
On the 15th of October, the team invited Mr. Ashish Sharma who is the head of the local govt. (BJP Block head, of Khanduri) and he graced the event to distribute the smart canes to children. At the event, two visually impaired students (Sameer & Kalpana) sung a melodious song which delighted the audience.
We are very grateful to Perkins India for their visionary Project-IDI, and their amazing partnership in Agra, which we are very proud of. We are also deeply grateful to all members of our extended Vision-Aid family in Agra and here in the US – for their support which makes such programs possible. It really does take a village – donors, volunteers, community leaders , government and NGOs like Vision-Aid and Perkins joining hands, to bring about such impact.
This project is one of the most meaningful, impactful, and inspiring programs for us at Vision-Aid since it helps us to reach the most vulnerable segments of children with profound disabilities in their own homes and offer a ray of hope and concrete assistance to the families. Several children are also then referred to our resource center in Agra for further support, interventions, and training.
We also sincerely thank you for your interest and support!
The Vision-Aid Team