According to a World Health Organisation (WHO) 2002 report, there are 161 million people who are visually impaired of whom 124 million were people with low vision and 37 million were blind. In Kenya 45,000 children live with visual impairment but only 7,000 have access to quality education. In a bid to address this, Kilimanjaro Blind Trust Africa (KBTA) a charitable trust is seeking to support the advancement of literacy among the visually impaired school children by raising funds towards the purchase of braille machines in Kenya.
The campaign dubbed #MyVision seeks to raise funds to partially fill the current gap of 800 braille machines at a cost of Kshs.80,000 each. This will aid in realizing the desired ratio 1:1 that is one machine per child.
So far KBTA has been able to train more than 170 field technicians in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, in brailler repair and maintenance, donation and subsequent distribution of 650 braille machines to schools and provision of more than 35 tons of good quality braille paper in the East Africa region.
Speaking at a fundraiser held last week at the Capital Club, Mr. Paul Polman, Unilever’s Global CEO and President of KBTA had this to say, “The current ratio of braille machine to child is 1 to 3 and this poses a great challenge to their access and quality of their education. We would like to bridge that gap because every visually impaired child has a right to basic education and an equal learning opportunity where they can be able to fully exploit their full potential bringing their dreams to life.”
Well wishers can donate to this noble cause via the paybill number 641097 a/c no. #My Vision, cheques can be written to Kilimanjaro Blind Trust Africa, Standard Chartered Bank A/C no. 010283895901.