Blind Walk: Claretians Network for the Blind
Responding to the changing needs of time, a creative ministry of Bangalore Province to reach out to the visually challenged persons found its best expression in a BlindWalk organized on October 10, 2019, World Sight Day. About 100,000 persons walked blindfolded in 227 locations spread across five countries, involving Claretians Provinces from various countries.
The BlindWalk in Macau was organized by Fr. Jojo Ancheryl, CMF in partnership with the St Joseph’s University, Macau. The BlindWalk in Manila was organized by the Institute of Consecrated Life in Asia involving students from various nationalities. BlindWalks in Guwahati and Shillong in Northeast India were organized by Fr. Joseph CMF, Director of NavJan, a social society of the Northeast India Independent Delegation. In Bengaluru, it started from St Joseph’s School, Museum road and ended at Samsung Opera, Brigade Road.
Networking with various other Christian groups has been a strategy to take this a global and national movement. The 500 strong BlindWalk was coordinated by Project Vision with non-governmental organizations and institutions.
BlindWalk is a novel idea developed by Project Vision to express solidarity with the visually challenged people with the caption ‘Feel Being Blind’. Through this experience people are motivated to donate their eyes. Conducted in Canada, China, Philippines, Sri Lanka and India, it is the largest eye donation campaign in the world.
The specialty of BlindWalk is that it blindfolds sighted people and takes them on a walk in a public place. The most touching aspect of the BlindWalk is that it is led by visually challenged people. While they walk in the front with their white canes, the blindfolded participants hold on to them to find their way.
For the Claretians of Bangalore, the visually challenged persons are much part of the peripheries for whom they are committed. The Organism made a commitment to address this group of people in their last Provincial Chapter.
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