As the world celebrated the White Cane Day on October 15, the visually impaired in Kirinyaga County have come out to conduct a walk to sensitize the public on their existence.
Kirinyaga County is the home to 3,500 visually impaired people who are now crying out to have their needs addressed.
Speaking at the County Commissioner’s headquarters where the walk was flagged off, the County Disability Services Officer Zipporah Miringu said their main objective was to ensure that persons who are visually impaired are included in decision making.
Miringu said the National Government was working in collaboration with the county to provide economic empowerment to the visually impaired with a view to ensuring their business registration was smooth.
“We ensure they do not pay the license fee for business registration and also safeguard tax exemption for everyone with disability,” she said.
The County Disability Officer said they always provide assistive devices through the National Council of Persons With Disability (NCPWD), including the white cane which they do for free.
For economic empowerment of the groups, she said they give grants and allocate substantial funding to them every financial year, while others engage in table banking.
She said their main aim of conducting the walk was to sensitize members of the public and urge them to incorporate the blind in their various activities.
“The public should know despite our members being blind, they are people who can do normal activities with little or no assistance,” she said.
One of the group members Ngiga Wanyaga said they would want to be involved in the county government’s decision-making table so that the available resources can reach all persons with disability.
“Those in offices must know that our people are suffering, we are on the ground and can easily confirm this,” he said.
By Ann Wanjiru/Dorris Wanyagia