Seeing life through new eyes
WORLD Sight Day is commemorated annually to draw attention to blindness and vision impairment.
Nelson Moodley, 58, of Verulam realised he was losing his vision when he was 10. He was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, which causes loss of vision.
“I knew I could not let this disability stop me from living my best life so I worked hard to use my memory and other senses to make up for my sight,” he said.
The self-taught musician participates in programmes to teach other visually impaired people basic skills.
“My aim is to motivate other visually challenged people and to show them that they can still find employment by learning a skill and by educating themselves.”
Naidoo has also represented KwaZuluNatal in cricket.
According to the World Health Organisation, 285 million people are estimated to be visually impaired worldwide, 39 million are blind and 246 million have low vision.
About 90% of the world’s visually impaired live in lowincome settings and 82% of people living with blindness are aged 50 and above.
KZN Blind and Deaf Society spokesperson Jenny Chetty said: “I believe a lot more can be done to aid and develop the skills of the physically challenged in terms of job opportunities. We also need to have more campaigns or dialogues on this issue as we find that a lot of employers abuse or take advantage of impaired staff by underpaying them.”
She felt the government should get actively involved to ensure funding is given to blind and deaf associations so they can improve their facilities and the programmes they provide.