Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin as the guest of honour and his spouse Datin Nurhayana Janis binti Abdullah got a true feel of how the visually impaired have meals at the Dining in the Dark event at Wafa Hotel and Apartment, Annajat Complex on Saturday night.
Brunei Darussalam National Association of the Blind’s (BDNAB), organised the event in conjunction with its 20th anniversary celebration and World Braille Day.
Event Chairman Mohammad Hakim Safree bin Radat, in his welcoming remarks, highlighted that the event was hoped to raise public awareness on the visually impaired as a main issue for international public health, especially in managing daily life from the aspect of food and drink.
He also highlighted the importance of the use of Braille for the visually impaired in the country.
Mohammad Hakim recalled the history of BDNAB, a non-government organisation (NGO) under the Registration of Society (ROS) and the Council for the Welfare of Persons with Different Abilities (MKOKU).
BDNAB was established on January 17, 2001 to empower visually-impaired individuals by encouraging equality and full participation in society.
BDNAB, he said, “will continue to fight for the civil rights and equality of visually impaired individuals, education development, technology and innovative training programme so that they can continue to live their life independently.
“BDNAB also brings together visually impaired individuals to share success stories and support each other during hard times and to achieve suitable solutions”.
Mohammad Hakim also hoped that visually impaired individuals can stand tall with the local community in the fields of education, employment opportunities, technologies, social, sports and culture.
Contributions for the construction of a permanent building for BDNAB and for future activities were collected during the event.
The new building will be used as a training centre to teach visually impaired individuals’ skills for independent living, daily life management, braille training, training for the use of aid equipment for the visually impaired, orientation and mobility training.
Education Officer and Head of the Assistance Services Division especially for Visual Sensory from the Special Education Unit Pengiran Hajah Hijrah Mahani binti Pengiran Haji Abdullah, in a sharing session, touched on her personal challenges as an individual who is visually impaired.
She also shared the many initiatives implemented by the government to support the visually impaired community in the country.