By Ange de la Victoire Dusabemungu
Myuyekure Isaka lives in Rukomo Sector, Rukomo II Cell, Isangano village in Nyagatare District, Part of the Eastern Province of Rwanda
He had the bad luck when he became blind in 2008 after a fierce storm of dust destroys his eyes.
Since that time he began to think how he will live the family without functioning eyes.
He is a farmer and breeder living in Rukomo Sector in Nyagatare District in the Eastern Province of Rwanda.
“After being blind I wondered how I will live, I was not able to identify what I can do.” He testifies
“But after joining Rwanda Union of the Blind, they taught me how I can do the practical work even if I’m blind.” He says
“They taught me how to cultivate. What was really needed is to know the distance between one seed to another.” He explains as he shows how he measures the distance using her guiding cane.
“There is no fear that I can break myself with the hoe because of the techniques that RUB taught me.” He added
Myuyekure Isaka is one of the leaders of the Blind Association in Nyagatare District.
He thanks RUB very much for the important role played in his life.
“The first goat I had after being blind, it’s RUB who offered me that. I started from scratch but today I am proud of myself and my family.” He noted
Mvuyekure practices agriculture on a space of one hectare. When the agricultural seasons are favorable, he harvests more than 400Kg of beans as he explained to us.
“So with the harvest I have to sell a few kilos at the market to be able to find the school fees for my children.” He explains.
Although he says that life is good today, he also has suggestions for the Government institutions and Private institutions.
For the Government, it should see how to increase the assistance to people with disabilities.
“For example, as you have seen us, we are twenty nine here. But those who have the white canes can be counted “Explains Mvuyekure.
A white cane is a device used by many people who are blind or visually impaired. A white cane primarily allows its user to scan their surroundings for obstacles or orientation marks, but is also helpful for onlookers in identifying the user as blind or visually impaired and taking appropriate care.
Really there is a need of additional support to people with visual impairment in Nyagatare.
As observed some of they are still struggling to make a living and you can hardly trace their happiness due to various constraints including economic factors.
Even if Rwanda Union of the blind put more effort in coordinating and supporting people with visual impairment but there is a need for government and donors from various sectors to intervene when requested.
RUB commends the level of self-confidence among persons with visual impairments which very different from the past.
However, Mvuyekure observed that for social services in government and private institutions, there is still disobedience behavior towards blind people.
“So many do not treat us even as others, they give us names that degrade us. They do not even know that people with disabilities should be given priority in the services. “He explains while challenging the local leaders.
RUB continues to enable beneficiaries on capacity building so they can make positive change towards their living conditions.
This year RUB with the support from donors had begun to train persons with visual impairment on how to conduct their self-advocacy on various matters that can hinder their progress or affecting negatively on their rights as human beings.
However their challenges are noted for advocacy where their voice can’t reach
It is in this regards that we also have worked on this story as part our advocacy reporting for various groups of people whose lives have faced serious challenges that need our solutions together.
To support Persons with visual impairments
Contact: Musabyimana Rachel
In Charge of Advocacy and Communications at Rwanda Union of the Blind (RUB).
Tel: +250 788 779 104