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Deaf athletes making a stride

Nyahururu town has been renowned for decades for producing some of the best athletes in the country among them the late Samuel Wanjiru.

Geoffrey Kamia uses sign language to communicate to the press. He says his dream is to bring as many medals to this country as possible and show the world that disability is not inability. Photo by Antony Mwangi

In Nyahururu Stadium, KNA meets with Geoffrey Kamia and Ian Kahiga who from the look of things, seem like just the normal athletes but after a closer look and interaction with them, notices they are impaired.

The duo are deaf and do not speak but that has not limited their abilities to chase their dreams which they say is to become well respected athletes across the country and world over.

To make better use of their talents, the duo have decided to train with other athletes who are not impaired.

However, they have appealed to the Laikipia County and the national government to cater for their affairs as at the moment, they rely on their families and fellow athletes for upkeep.

Kahiga says he discovered his running talent early while in primary school and his brother has been his pillar in nurturing his talent.

According to Dennis Kipkosgei who is a seasoned athlete in Nyahururu town, the runners have a WhatsApp group where they communicate with the deaf athletes.

“It is easier to communicate on WhatsApp with them, because they understand how to read and write and moreover, not many of us understand the sign languages they use while on a face to face communication with them,” says Kipkosgei.

Kamia says that he prefers to train with Kahiga because he easily communicate unlike other people who don’t understand much of their sign language.

He says his dream is to bring as many medals to this country as possible and show the world that disability is not inability.

Their appeal is to the government to ensure they support them as they would be a motivation to other people living with impairment.

By Antony Mwangi

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