A project to create a positive culture of support for the blind, especially in the Northern Region to help them reach their potentials.
The year-long project, spanning May 2021 to April 2022, dubbed: “Anti-Stigma and Discrimination Against Blind” (ASDAB), formed part of the Ghana Somubi Dwumadie programme, which is funded by UKaid.
The Centre for Active Learning and Integrated Development (CALID) and the Northern Regional branch of the Ghana Blind Union (GBU) are implementing the ASDAB in 15 communities in the Tamale Metropolis and the Savelugu and Sagnarigu Municipalities where the majority of members of the GBU reside.
The Ghana Somubi Dwumadie programme seeks to, among others, promote stronger policies and systems that respect the rights of people with disabilities, including people with mental health disabilities.
It also aims to reduce stigma and discrimination against people with disabilities, including mental health disabilities.
Mr Mohammed Awal Sumani Bapio, Executive Director of CALID, who spoke about the project during its inception meeting at Savelugu, encouraged the citizenry to use positive languages on the blind and people with mental health conditions.
Mr Bapio called on traditional, religious and opinion leaders to support the blind in their communities to enable them to reach their full potentials in life.
He further called on Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies to ensure that the GBU access its share of the District Assemblies Common Fund in good time to support their livelihoods.
In line with the project, representatives of CALID and the GBU paid courtesy calls on the Paramount Chief of Savelugu and the Chiefs of Langa, and Nyohini to introduce the project to them and to seek their support to ensure a successful implementation for the benefit of the blind in society.
Yoo Naa Abdulai Andani, Paramount Chief of Savelugu Traditional Area, described the project as a laudable intervention, which would ensure that the blind received the needed support from their families and community members.
Yoo Naa Andani pledged his support for the project and called on other traditional rulers to support it to succeed.
Naa Abdulai Salifu, Chief of Langa said, “We are ready to render our services to support whoever that is willing to help in transforming our human resources especially those living with disabilities in this community.”
Other stakeholders, including traditional rulers, engaged in the communities as part of the project pledged their support for it and gave the assurance that they would fight for the rights of people with disabilities, especially the blind.
Communities visited included Savelugu, Zoggu, Diyale, Pong Tamale and Langa in the Savelugu Municipality, Tampe Kukuo, Dimala, Gurugu, Jisonayili and Sonayili in the Sagnarigu Municipality and Sakasaka, Lamashegu, Kukuo, Nyohini and Aboabo in the Tamale Metropolis.