I was reminded again today of how amazing volunteering is! It is just not about making time to help others… it is so much more… It’s an experience in itself. One such moving experience happened to me today at Giftabled’s Braille and Sign Language workshop. I was blindfolded and given a cane to experience how it feels to be visually impaired. A volunteer was assigned to me to help traverse my path – which was to walk out of the compound and go till the next building and come back. In between there of course were hurdles like gate, pits, traffic, pavements and other humans. It was somehow deeply moving – feeling the fear of falling down, the fear of being hit by something and what not! However, the experience did not make me sympathize with the blind, instead it sensitized me towards them.
We are never taught in our homes or schools on how to deal with specially challenged people. Often, we are taught to ignore them and to stay away from them, maybe to avoid being of help. For whatever reason, we are never taught how to interact with them or to feel and believe that they are also human beings and one among us and not outside the general society.
After today’s experience, I strongly believe that we all should teach our children either at home and at schools to be sensitive towards other people’s disabilities. To help them in need, to just be friends with them and to really form the so-called inclusive society.
Oh and by the way, I also learnt the A-Z in sign language and writing in Braille.
All thanks to Prarthana Unkalkar Kaul! Our amazing teacher!