Thursday, 4 December 2008

December 3rd - World Disability Day

My disabilities have aroused many negative emotions in me and I still have to fight them. but I have started to look at myself as a differently abled person.
I want to spread this message around and help others to look at themselves in this new light.
Here is what I found on a website

World Disability Day
Ensuring equal opportunities for Disabled Individuals Thomas Alva Edison was born on Feb 11, 1847 in a middle class family. Edison has an unusually large head and skull other developmental disabilities such as hearing loss and speech difficulties. Infact, he did not start speaking until age 4. He was even suspended from school for a poor academic performance after his teacher lost hope to train him. He developed a keen interest for science and literature. At the age of 15, he was offered the position of a telegraph operator that allowed him to improve his working efficiency. His greatest invention, the incandescent electric light bulb stands unparalleled in the path of human civilization. Edison’s recollection about his mother: “ was the making of me... she was always so true and so sure of me and always made me feel I had someone to live for and must not disappoint "The above paragraph is just to sensitize you the importance of disabled individuals to the society, not to underestimate the contributions of many others who have left their unique mark behind for others to understand. It is also equally important to provide support and rehabilitation service to such individuals to help them realize their potential. A more than 600 people live with various forms of disability worldwide according to estimates by the World Health Organization. A majority of these live in under developed conditions where educational, health care and economic condition are sub optimal. Population explosion, the increasing proportion of aged individuals, chronic diseases such as diabetes and osteoarthritis, malnutrition, injuries due to war and violence, occupational injuries, sports injuries, large-scale environmental pollution, increasing road traffic in the industrialized areas are some of the factors known to contribute to disability. Persons with disabilities should be ensured that they have the equal right to access opportunities as a normal person. It is high time that we learn that allocation of resources to such disabled persons is an investment rather than a mere medical expense.
In India disabled people are either abandoned by their families , marginalized or left to fend for themselves.
Very few are able to take advantage
of the government sponsored help. There is no
disability pension or support.Schools are desperately needed
for physically, mentally and educationally challenenged children.
Disabled people should be integrated into society.
There is a small movement towards it, hope it grows
at a faster rate.

4 Fertilize my soul:

Jeanette said...

Great post, Amrita! As you know, my daughter is very much "differently abled." Some of her different abilities are to bring sunshine and joy and unconditional love and affection to my life like no one else can do. Her spirit and God's seem to have a special connection, and I love to see that; definitely a different ability from what most people have. I am thankful that there are many programs here in place to help her do her best and to help caregivers like me; however, we still need a lot of improvement, too.

I know being "differently abled" is difficult, but you have been such a huge blessing and shining light to people all over the world. If you had no physical limitations, perhaps you would not have the time to be sharing your life with us and encouraging us like you do.

Julia Dutta said...

Hi Amrita,

A great post. The words differently abled actually is a very good way to look at it, because it is true.
We are in in the habit of looking at everything as black and white. The Grey ( which is so important because it merges both extremes) is something we don't want to address, because we don't want to look at it. It is easier to keep looking at what we can handle. That is precisely why, there is little or no activism in this area. As you say, Governments and different sections of society need to address this soon. Not just sympathise, which is a disgusting way of looking at it.
In Delhi, I often find many differently abled persons on the bus or elsewhere, who have a true sense of survival. I like their passion for life and the fight they put up to overcome their disability. I see them, just like everyone else.

In many ways, we are all differently abled, just like we are differently made, all in the image of God, but all so different.
The truth is: All are different; all are equal :))

Felisol said...

Dear Amrita,
here we all are differently abled.
What a promising and oh, so accurate definition.
By us it's early morning 4th of December.
I'll celebrate anyway.
From Felisol

Sita said...

"Disabled?"...Amrita, you are one of the most 'able' people I have met in blogland...thank you for allowing God to use you so uniquely..
I have met several Indians who lament that kids with disabilities are treated with 'shame'--the families are made to feel shame--and they are 'discarded'..that is truly sad... there are many resources and a greater chance to achieve like are already proving thme wrong and making a blessed...