Wednesday, December 11, 2019
ADVT 
Spotlights

Visually-challenged Tiffany Brar has big vision

BY SANU GEORGE/IANS, 10 Jun, 2019
  • Visually-challenged Tiffany Brar has big vision

"There is no need to segregate visually-challenged people, when it comes to jobs. They can do most jobs like others. What's needed is to train them in soft skills and computers and increase the chances of their employability," Brar

 

Thiruvananthapuram, June 9 (IANS) In a world where visually-impaired people are considered dependent on others, Tiffany Brar, 30, who lost her sight at birth, leads by example and has made the lives of hundreds of visually-challenged people more meaningful by training them for jobs.

 

Driven to empower and skill the visually-challenged people, Kerala-based Brar started a non-profit organisation Jyothirgamaya Foundation (Sanskrit for ‘leading to light'), which started a mobile blind school in 2012. The disability rights activist says there are about 400,000 visually-challenged people in Kerala, who through proper interventions can be empowered to make their own living.

 

 

"There is no need to segregate visually-challenged people, when it comes to jobs. They can do most jobs like others. What's needed is to train them in soft skills and computers and increase the chances of their employability," Brar told IANS here. She conducts short-term courses for visually-impaired in batches of six-seven students. Her organisation has trained over 200 people through camps and 1,100 through residential empowerment programme. Brar's own life is defined by persistence and extraordinary courage. Born in Chennai, where her father, an army officer from Punjab, was posted. She lost her sight at birth due to overdose of oxygen. Her father's posting took her to Britain, where she started her schooling. At 12, she lost her mother. She later studied in Kerala and Darjeeling.

Despite little specialised training for visually-challenged, she passed 12th class with flying colours, finished college and took up work. She then did B.Ed. in special education (visual impairment) from Coimbatore. Since the setting up of Jyothirgamaya, Brar has travelled quite a bit -- not just within the country but across the world. Brar always thinks about several things that she has to do and how to strengthen her organisation. "Our motto is ‘empowering the visually-challenged'. We conduct several training sessions to equip them to get a job," said Brar.

The private sector, especially the IT companies in Kerala, should come forward to employ trained visually-challenged people, she said and added, a few had come forward and we wish more to join. When floods hit Kerala in August 2018, she went around collecting relief materials for camps. Several awards have come her way. In November, she won the 19th National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP)'s Mindtree Helen Keller Award. In 2017, she received the National Award for being the ‘best role model' from the President. "I have a long way to go and am determined to empower the visually-challenged," said Brar.

 

MORE Spotlights ARTICLES

Dr. Naranjan S. Dhalla: A world icon in heart research

Dr. Naranjan S. Dhalla: A world icon in heart research

Recently inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame, Cardiac expert  Dr. Dhalla has been diligently working in the field of Experimental Cardiology with a focus on pathophysiology and pharmacology of cardiac dysfunction. 

Dr. Naranjan S. Dhalla: A world icon in heart research

Inspirational Youth of Today

Inspirational Youth of Today

The future of the South Asian community is bright and positive and its credit goes to impressive young adults who believe in positive growth, community upliftment, and creation of a better world for everyone to live in.

Inspirational Youth of Today

COVERSTORY - Sukhmeet Sachal: Young Humanitarian

COVERSTORY - Sukhmeet Sachal: Young Humanitarian

Besides being an academic scholar, Sukhmeet is a humanitarian, public health advocate, and environmental advocate who believes in the recipe of intercultural dialogue in order to promote peace in the world. 

COVERSTORY - Sukhmeet Sachal: Young Humanitarian

COVERSTORY - Rochelle Prasad: International Volunteer

COVERSTORY - Rochelle Prasad: International Volunteer

Global volunteer, youth empowerment advocate, role model, young entrepreneur, social activist, motivational speaker, academic achiever, and passionate educator – these are few among the many roles Rochelle Prasad plays in her life.

COVERSTORY - Rochelle Prasad: International Volunteer

COVERSTORY - Naitik Mehta: Changing the Face of Tech Industry

COVERSTORY - Naitik Mehta: Changing the Face of Tech Industry

Naitik is the CEO and co-founder of NextBillion.org, an organization that provides mentorship and employment opportunities to students with disabilities in technology. 

COVERSTORY - Naitik Mehta: Changing the Face of Tech Industry

COVERSTORY - Jasneet Nijjar: One Track Goal in Mind

COVERSTORY - Jasneet Nijjar: One Track Goal in Mind

A South Asian athlete shining bright among BC’s young and upcoming sprinters is 18-year old Jasneet Nijjar. 

COVERSTORY - Jasneet Nijjar: One Track Goal in Mind