Basseterre, St. Kitts, October 21, 2019 (S.T.E.P.) — As the world observes October as the Blind Awareness Month, the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club is living to its motto – ‘We Serve’. Based on the organisation’s programmes which include sight conservation among others, visually impaired persons have been profoundly impacted, while a number of schools have benefited from eye-screenings courtesy of the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club.
Thursday October 17 was a memorable day at the McKnight Community Centre with President of the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club Ms Charmaine Pemberton, who was accompanied by past President Ms Adora Warner and member Mrs Judy Tyrell, making a presentation of braille books, braille dominos, and audio cassette tapes to the St. Kitts Society for the Blind, and white canes to two visually impaired members of the society.
Braille books, a pack of braille dominos, and audio cassette tapes were presented to the President of the St. Kitts Society for the Blind, Mr Rockliffe Bowen who accepted them on behalf of the society, while the white canes were presented to 82-year old Mr Eric Belle, and Ms Sharon Fredrick who are both blind.
“Mr Bowen, on behalf of the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club, it gives me great pleasure to present these braille books to the St. Kitts Society for the Blind,” said President Ms Pemberton. “I do hope that they will come in useful to new members especially, who can learn braille and will be able to communicate with others through braille.”
President Ms Pemberton also presented the audio cassette tapes, which she noted contained information that was useful to persons who are visually impaired and she beseeched the members to share out the tapes among themselves. Ms Pemberton also presented a white cane to Ms Sharon Fredrick telling her that it would help her along in speeding up her walk and getting through in her travels.
Lions Club member Mrs Judy Tyrell presented Mr Eric Belle with the second white cane, expressing sincere hope that it would help him to move along and get around especially when in his home and places he has difficulties in getting.
Mr Rockliffe Bowen is an avid domino player, but he used to rely on his sighted colleagues to tell him what dominos he was holding. When he explained his predicament to the members of the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lion Club, a special pack of braille dominos was made available. Indeed he first used the braille dominos when they held a beachnic at the Anchorage in Frigate Bay on Saturday October 12.
However, the pack of braille dominos was officially handed over to the St. Kitts Society for the Blind on Thursday October 17 by past President of the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club Ms Adora Warner, and was received by Mr Bowen.
“On behalf of the St. Kitts Society for the Blind, and by extension our sister organisation the St. Kitts Nevis Association for Persons with Disabilities, I would like to say thanks to the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club for these items that you have donated this afternoon,” said Mr Bowen. “I hope that these items will go a long way in helping our members in terms of getting around, socialising and educating our young students who are coming up. Convey these words of appreciation to the other members who are not here, and let them know how appreciative we are in receiving these items.”
According to the President of the St. Kitts (Basseterre) Lions Club, Ms Charmaine Pemberton, in celebration of October as the Blind Awareness Month, the club organised a walk for visually impaired persons on Saturday October 12 in the morning under the theme ‘Journey for Sight’ and a beach picnic at the Anchorage in Frigate Bay in the afternoon.
“Also as part of the Blind Awareness Month, we stopped by the Irish Town Primary School on Friday 11th October to do some eye screening there for the kids,” said President Ms Pemberton. “Since most of the kids were out to witness exercises being conducted by the US Naval Ship Comfort, we then proceeded to visit Bronte Welsh, Dr William Connor, and Beach Allen Primary Schools.”