Sightsavers India, a global development organisation working in India since 1966 to eliminate avoidable blindness, has launched a film highlighting the plight of people with disabilities during COVID and the intervention by the organisation to support them on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
The film focusses on Sightsavers’ three core areas of work which are Eye Health, Social Inclusion and Inclusive Education.
Says R N Mohanty, CEO at Sightsavers India and columnist for The CSR Journal, “When the pandemic struck, life came to a halt for many persons with disability who had to suffer due to lack of jobs and were unable to support their families. Sightsavers, along with its partners, reached out to people with disabilities in our operational areas of Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. Sightsavers aims to promote a positive and enabling environment for persons with disability through livelihood interventions and facilitates the formation and capacity building of Disabled People’s Organisations (DPOs) to carry out effective advocacy for their rights on all platforms and levels.”
The film highlights the goal of Sightsavers during the pandemic, to ensure that people receive their income, food supplies, medical help, continuing education and psycho-social support so that they remain stronger as they are and continue fighting the pandemic. It also brings forth the intervention with respect to online education for visually impaired children in Bihar known as Sankalp.
A model of tele-education was adapted in 36 districts in Bihar which involves teaching children through mobile telephonic network using calls to children through resource personnel. Additionally, the film showcases the plan of action for hospital partners and ensure safety in operations for the eye-health workers and patients.
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