“There is no better way to thank God for your sight than by giving a helping hand to someone in the dark.”-Helen Keller
Blind Walk is an initiative commemorating World Sight Day on the 2nd Thursday of the month of October, making it the largest eye donation campaign in the world; to create awareness about blindness, raise funds to support the community, and raise pledges for eye donation. What started with three Blind Walks in 2014 has developed into a global program involving 55 locations in five countries in 2016. World Sight Day is an International Day of Awareness, held annually on the second Thursday of October. World Sight Day is a reminder to you, to love your eyes. World Sight Day is an opportunity to focus the world’s attention on eye health as a global issue, raises awareness of eye health amongst individuals, families, and communities, and is a platform to influence decision-makers to prioritize eye health initiatives and help activate demand for eye health services globally.
Living with the invisible is not easy, the people who are blind, have a lot of limitations in their life. There are difficulties in work and living in society. They cannot drive and work in a career that requires their eyes to be important. Some people who are acquired blind, might still not accept their status, feel sadness, and fear, and cannot take care of themselves. Visually impaired people have a harder time of life than normal eye people. The striking experience of Blind Walk is that a visually normal person is blindfolded and led along a 1 to 1.5km route, which is utterly in the darkness on the road for an hour. This will give the feeling of being visually impaired and to understand the darkness of their world. The objective of Blind walk is to increase the independence, security, equality of opportunity, and improved quality of life, for all blind and visually-impaired people.
The Rotary Club of Colombo Mid Town along with the Rotaract clubs of Achievers Lanka Business School, Australian College of Business and Technology, Colombo Mid Town, and University of Colombo Faculty of Management and Finance join together to organize the BLINDWALK in Sri Lanka. Blind Walk is an award-winning project initiated with the aim of alleviating the plight of the visually impaired. However, the Blind Walk 2021 was held virtually with a Talk Show and an open mic night due to the pandemic. Last Year a blind challenge was held among the Rotaractors to experience the hardness of doing daily activities with a blindfold. Dr. Vasuki Gurusamy, a consultant Eye Surgeon from The Kalubowila Teaching Hospital was the guest speaker on the Talk show and she gave an insightful view on Blindness and its reasons. Blind Walk 2022 is going to be held for the sixth time, and this year in a different way including the walk and a carnival.
The Blind Walk 2022 is planned such that it reaches more audiences than before. This year’s Blind Walk will witness the walk and a carnival happening on the 22nd of October 2022 at Viharamahadevi Open Air Theatre Car Park. The theme of the walk this year will be “Walk for light, in sight” and it aims to promote pledges for eye donation, collect funds to support the visually impaired, and provide them with an opportunity to reveal their talents in the open mic night. The walk will start from Viharamahadevi park at 3 p.m. and let a normal person blindfolded and led by a visually impaired person to an extent of a 1.5 km route. Then it will be followed by a fun-filled Carnival. This will consist of various types of stalls and DJs where the members of Rotaract and a few visually impaired people will perform on the stage. After 2 years of virtual sessions, The Blind Walk 2022 welcomes you all to get the real feeling of Blind Walk.
Let’s join together and get a wholesome feeling of lighting up the darkness in someone’s life!
Written by: Rtr. Ramajini Gnanasuthan
Edited by: Rtr. Imesha Ilangasinghe