About 2 per cent of the total population of the country has some form of disability

Kathmandu, December 16

The Blind Youth Association Nepal, Kathmandu is organising a charity concert to financially support visually impaired students, who were most affected by the 2015 earthquakes.

“The concert aims to generate money to provide training and necessary equipment to visually impaired students,” said Kaladhar Bhandari, president of BYAN.

At a press meet for the ‘Reach the Unreached Benefit Concert’ held today, Bhandari informed that the concert targets the visually impaired and features famous bands and visually impaired celebrities. The concert will be held on December 24 in Tundikhel.

According to a survey report prepared by BYAN, only 10 of the 14 districts most affected by the 2015 earthquakes have schools established for visually impaired students. In the 10 districts, a total of 275 students (154 boys and 121 girls) were directly affected by the earthquakes.

In the same way, seven hostels for visually impaired were totally damaged, and nine hostels were damaged partially.

Also, eight schools were totally damaged, and two other schools were partially damaged in the quakes.

General Secretary of BYAN Ram Chandra Gaire said there were more than 94,000 visually impaired people in the country as per government records, but no training or programmes had been developed to teach them safety rules to follow during and after earthquakes.

“The government has organised different kinds of campaigns to teach the general public about safety measures to take before and after earthquakes, but the campaigns are not accessible to the visually impaired,” Gaire said.

About 2 per cent of the total population has some form of disability. Of them, 36 per cent are handicapped, 18 per cent are visually impaired, and 15 per cent are hearing impaired. Gaire shared that no visually impaired students had received disaster/earthquake preparedness training till now from the government.

Because of the earthquake, at least 275 students from 16 blind schools of the 10 districts are in need of immediate intervention.

“The fund raised from the concert will help provide equipment such as white canes, slates/styluses, other education materials, school dresses, and necessary disaster preparedness training to students,” informed Gaire.