Develop your potentials, disabled urged
By Sunmola Olowookere
People living with disabilities have been urged to develop their potentials, so that they could restore their dignity and stop begging for alms on the streets.
Making this call was the Consultant for Antwort Consulting, Mr. Smith Mbata during a skill training and empowerment programme organised for people living with disabilities in Ondo state.
Thirty people were invited for the programme, however 21 people were able to honour the invitation.
According to the Consultant, the programme was packaged in conjunction with the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The people were trained in the following areas: make up, manicure and pedicure, headtie and auto gele, wig making, shoe and bag making, confectionery, GSM repair and bead making.
The participants were divided into groups which they showed preference for consisting of seven groups in all.
The programme which started on April 8,2019 was organised to run for twelve days.
Mbata stated that the programme stemmed from the need to bring out the creativity in people living with disabilities and encouraged them to eventually go off the streets.
He expressed the optimism that they could make a decent living if they are encouraged to believe in themselves.
He stated that the NGO had spent 6 million naira on the project so far and that it has been replicated in nine States including Ondo, Akwa-ibom, Edo, Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers, Cross-River, Imo and Abia states.
He disclosed that each of the participants would be given start up capital for the various skills they specialized in after the training.
He said that those that show exceptional skills in their chosen fields and desired further training would be encouraged to do so.
The trainers of the different groups were full of praise for the participants describing them as eager, attentive and ready to learn.
Four men who were fully blind made up the group learning about how to make confectioneries.
Their excitement was noteworthy as they took notes in braille and also followed the instructions of their trainers on measurements of ingredients and the preparation of different kinds of confectioneries.
Their trainer, one Mrs Oluwakemi Ayorinde said that they got the cutting of the chinchin to be fried correctly despite the fact that they could not see, while praising them for their attentiveness.
One of them, Karimu Babatunde stated that he wished to learn the trade very well, so that he could be able to teach others, even those without visual impairments how to make confectioneries.
Another participant who learnt Photography, Isola Shem from Araromi seaside stated that the skill he learnt during the training will help to augment his meagre income.
Their instructor in Photography, Mr. Abiodun Dada said that the participants learnt a lot about the trade and could make a living from it if they are determined.
Another trainee who learnt beadmaking though visually impaired expressed readiness to start the trade as she described it as a lucrative venture.