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JIS News

Custos of Kingston, Hon. Steadman Fuller, has appealed to the society to support the ‘Save an Eye, Save the Jamaica Society for the Blind’ fundraising initiative, and assist in ensuring that the visually impaired are equipped with the necessary amenities.
Speaking at the launching ceremony at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Mona Lions Centre for Students with Special Needs, at the, Mona Campus, on Thursday (June 10), Mr. Fuller said the initiative aims to ensure that the visually impaired have the help that they need to obliterate the misery that might, otherwise, have been associated with their condition.
“This spirit of seeing to the needs of others is one that is to be encouraged and practised across the length and breadth of Jamaica,” he said.
The initiative, which seeks to raise money for the Jamaica Society for the Blind (JSB), is a partnership involving the National Health Fund (NHF), UWI, and Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS), and others. It will focus on selling paraphernalia, such as armbands, key rings and whistles to members of the public, particularly through schools.
Speaking in an interview with JIS News, Co-ordinator/Head of the Centre for Disability Studies, Floyd Morris, said the initiative is part of the UWI’s response to the needs of various disability groups, through a range of projects.
He said it is hoped that significant funds will be generated to assist the JSB in: (1) supporting rehabilitation; and (2), assisting the retired Executive Director of the JSB, who worked with the organisation for over 30 years.
He noted that, even though the paraphernalia will be distributed to schools islandwide, through the Ministry of Education, the Centre will act as a hub and can be contacted at 977-9423.
Mr. Morris said children are being targeted as they are a captive market and the product is something that will appeal to them.
“Once the young people buy into the message, they will translate (it) to their parents and their family members, and then we will have a better culture of a society for persons with disabilities, in particular persons who are blind and visually impaired,” he added.
Acting Executive Director, JSB, Conrad Harris, commended the stakeholders for the initiative adding that the project will motivate others to come on board and assist.
The JSB, which was established in 1954, focuses on helping visually impaired and challenged persons to adjust to their condition and lead productive lives.