Sifa Salimbhai Ganiyani is 10 years old and is unable to see the world since birth. She was admitted in my hospital for three days (from 09/02/2016 till 11/02/2016) as she was suffering from typhoid. When I met her for three days, I came to know about the difficulties, problems and day to day issues of blind girls. Blindness is basically a natural effect and not a state of being handicap for any person who wants to get the best of knowledge, efficiency and understanding, eye is an independent organ. The blind people increase their sense of touch, smell and hearing and thus become powerful. I used to be very delighted and happy to see Sifa because whenever I met her she used to recite a beautiful prayer. And she was also very talkative. Sifa’s few friends also had come to see her in the hospital. I could know more about the difficulties faced by the blind girls, when I got a chance to converse with Sifa’s friends and also some active volunteers of the organization.
The major difficulty that blind people face is in education. They have to face a lot because there is less reading material, insufficient literature, less books and hardly any labs to carry out experiments. At times they have to suffer a lot because there do not get reading and writers in time and they are highly dependent on them. They become helpless because there are not many books available Braille script.
They have to literally wait for someone who can teach them. They work really hard for the whole year and in the end if the writer says that he is unable to come and write the exam and then just imagine that they would require too much inner strength just to be strong enough to face the adverse situation. It hurts when our society believes that blindness is a curse or the result of past deeds in earlier birth. Blind people have to face immense problems while getting sexual education, enjoying the nature, identifying colors when he or she dresses up, in financial exchange, in sports, in checking the quality of the product, in getting entertainment and also in sharing their sharing their feelings viewpoints.
In 1954 Vinodaben Desai had set the roots of the organization. Currently almost 200 blind girls reside in the Kanchan Gauri Mangaldas blind girls hostel in Memnagar. They live with hope of enlightening their lives with physical, mental, educational, social, financial and overall development of their lives.
This organization has the belief that even though these lovely daughters do not have eyesight but they have ray of hope and a spark in their eyes and the belief is proved absolutely correct by seeking the best growth. Once the girl enters the gates of organization she feels the warmth and love in the air. There is homely atmosphere and learning with fun and also friends with similar characteristics. There is overall development of every girl and that brings of relief and the life passes beautifully. There is a wonderful garden in the campus. To have eyes is one thing and to have proper eyesight in another thing. This organization converts their deficiency into a vision. Because of that the blind girls get a chance to move ahead in their lives. The girls and their parents feel secured and relaxed because the organization provides facilities of staying, food and education free of cost.
French architect BernardKone has designed the building of the organization after keeping in mind the smallest requirements of the blind girls. It has a mobility park. There is a temple to pray and come closer to God. In this institute the blind girls learn to make mobs, doormats, files, rakhis and also snacks. If you taste the chikkis made by these girls, you will definitely love to try again and again from here. Most of the ladies are able to sing beautifully and are also able to play one or the other musical instrument. It’s a privilege to get a chance to listen to any devotional song or movie song sung in chores by these girls. The institute runs various courses through which they can study home science, computer, mass communication and telephone operating courses. More than 50 teachers and faculties are attached with this organization. Some females who are not completely blind and have less vision, for them also low vision courses are there. Now few females are working with banks after completing their graduation. Along with education the institute extends lot of other help also, like getting the operation of cataract, eye surgery etc. and organizes tours and picnics in Gujarat. The activities of this institute are not only confined in imparting education and making them self-sufficient so that they can earn for themselves. From 1996 the females who have availed proper education were helped to tie knots with appropriate life partner after taking permission of their parents. By this year (2016) more than 100 girls have started their married life. The organization has extended help to the married females of the institute for opening small shops of flowers, earthen lamps, snacks etc. so that they can be financially sound and can run their house. In December 2011, there was ALL INDIA DANCE COMPETITION of blind girls and in that also the girls of this institute bagged the first prize.
The institute is now planning for the future of the ladies who are more than 50 years and are alone. Salute and respect for all these who are attached with this institute including the trustees, staff, people and for their endless efforts and dedication. They are putting to make the lives of these girls beautiful. It’s a humble request to you also that have faith in the training given to these girls and give them an opportunity to prove their work and worth.