The saying that there’s ability in disability cannot be over-emphasized. Most times, those who describe themselves as “able” are not capable of achieving what “disabled” ones can achieve. Nigerian Olympic team is a perfect example where paralympians always return home with medals while the main team are always disqualified at the early state. Also, Cobhams, a visually impaired songwriter, artist, and producer has become one of the best Nigerian entertainment industry has while Adesoji, also visually impaired returned home with an Olympic medal when she competed with those who can see. These are just a few of those who transformed their disabilities to abilities and are celebrated the world over. For many, the average Nigerian child born with a disability does not stand a chance, but not in the eyes of the Protect the Precious Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organization based in Umuahia. Being visually impaired is just the absence of sight, not other senses, and this informed the decision of the organization to take her Girl Child Advocacy awareness campaign to the girls of School for the Blind, Afara, Umuahia to inspire the them and boost their confidence of becoming more than the sight.
The awareness campaign which was both emotional and inspiring had the organization talk on “becoming more” and “building self confidence”.
The first resource person, Emmanuel Okafor cited examples of those who didn’t allow their conditions stop them, and encouraged them to be determined to make a difference in their time against all odds. He further reiterated the need to be open to those around them that can mentor them in their areas of interest and also ask questions.
Chidinma Ezedimbu, while speaking on “building self confidence” called on the girls to at all times speak up when they are abused or harrased. According to her, that is the only way to ensure their protection and reminded them that they have all it takes to make an impact.
She used the forum to call on the female teachers to develop a very close relationship with the girls and help build their confidence while giving them listening ears.
The lead Person, of the organization, Norah Okafor who hammered on several issues affecting the girl child including lesbianism, rape, abuse among others urged the girls to be conscious of their environment and always identify the predators among them. She assured of the Organization’s commitment to take up any case of abuse raised from their quarters while reiterating their commitment to defend, protect and uphold their integrity which is the mission of the organization.
The no-holds barred conversation had the girls and the teachers speak about the issues faced while solutions were sought.
The girls and their teachers who were elated by the awareness creation prayed the organization to regularly visit while asking God to uphold them in His grace.
Recall that Protect the Precious Foundation on May 28, 2021 held a Girls Summit in Umuahia which brought over a thousand girls from different schools in the state under one umbrella to discuss issues that affect them including Girls from School for the Blind.