In a first-of-its-kind initiative in Kerala, a group of visually challenged people including children entered the world of learning by touching the Braille dots here, as part of the ‘Vidyarambham’ ceremony on Vijayadasami day on Tuesday. As many as 12 persons belonging to the age group of eight to thirty were initiated into the world of letters by making them read the braille alphabets at a special ‘Vidyarambham’ (beginning of learning) programme held at Plamood in the city.
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Experts helped them read the English braille alphabets during the function, organised by the National Association for the Blind (NAB), a state-based NGO. “Majority of the participants were those coming from very poor background. Most of them have not started any kind of learning so far. So, it was a real Vidyarambham for them,” Josey Joseph, General Secretary, NAB, told PTI.
Besides the blind, their parents and relatives were also given the first lessons to read Braille, he said. “An awareness about braille should be given to the parents as well. They can thus help the visually challenged to learn the script,” he said, adding, the association would continue giving classes to the participants in the coming days to carry forward their learning.
The programme was organised to highlight the significance of braille as a tool for empowerment of those deprived of vision, Joseph said. Cutting across religious and caste barriers, thousands of tiny tots in the state entered the world of knowledge by scribbling their first letters, marking Vidyarambham on Tuesday.