NEW HOPE FOR THE DISABLED

Society seems not to include the physically challenged and accept them as they are and helping them feel a part of the it just like any other person.
Many people living with disabilities feel the world has been segregating them for so long almost like passengers who can at any time can be told to disembark.
In trying to make the world a better place for the physically challenged, some associations have been formed to look into the issues of the disabled.
Some sections feel these associations are carrying a heavy load and preoccupied with other issues far from the concerns of the disabled and are therefore unable to look into critical issues that deeply affect the physically challenged.
The Disability Inclusion Association of Zambia (DIAZ, was in early 2018 formed to critically look into the issues that affect people living with physical challenges.
Association President Mike Chivumo, said the formation of the association will give a voice to the people with disabilities and make sure they feel part of the society.
“Many societal activities are done without the participation of the disabled, speaking of the film industry it is something that has never given the leading role to a disabled person; very few people with physical challenges are even included in film making.
“Why can’t we be given such opportunities and show the world what we are capable of doing certain things as human beings,” he said.
And Ndola based physically  challenged woman Tracy Chibale said her growing up was something pathetic no one would love to go through.
She explained that books were her only friends because no one wanted to play with her.
“I accepted the fact that I was different from everyone else, but I always wanted to have someone to talk to, peers I can share experiences with and to joke around, but sadly I have no one…they all deserted me and it was something huge when someone greets me,” she said.
And some physically challenged pupils of George compound in Lusaka said they are left out in activities which they would love to enjoy with their fellow pupils because of their disabilities.
“I have friends in class but they don’t like to spend a lot of time playing with me…they say I am not able to play games and sometimes they say I don’t suit the squad so I just go home to sleep,” said a 10 year old boy.
This segregation has resulted in many children with disabilities not going to school as they do not find their place among other pupils.

It only takes the hard ones to survive and only with rendered support from parents and teachers.
“This is the biggest concern for the association, we want to see children with different types of physical challenges to attend school, go to colleges and universities and get normal employment just like any other person in the society,” said Mr. Chivumo.
An upcoming artist told Lusaka Star reporter about the challenge he faces in the music industry as he is disabled.
“They laugh at me and say I can’t do anything constructive, I feel a huge draw back in my career but I always keep up and have faith I will make it one day,” he said.
The community of the disabled is hopeful that such associations like DIAZ will give them a voice and the inclusion to the society.

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