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Hundreds to take part in 'Blind walk', to sensitise public on eye donation

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Bengaluru, Oct 08: The Project Vision, a Bengaluru-based non-governmental organisation, will be organising a 'Blind Walk' to mark World Sight Day on October 10, i.e Thursday. The event will also be simultaneously held across the world.

Hundreds to take part in Blind walk, to sensitise public on eye donation

The event will start around 4 pm from St Josephs School, Museum road and will conclude at the Samsung Opera House Brigade Road Junction with an assembly for the administration of the oath for eye donation and a short musical presentation by the Blind. The walk requires participants to cover the distance blindfolded.

The 'Blind Walk' event will also witness participants pledging to donate their eyes and to work as vision ambassadors for society to easy the process of eye donation.

The first edition, held in 2014, saw a good response from the disabled and non-disabled community. However, this time during their 6th edition the organisers are expecting some more volunteers. So far, about 750 Blind walks have been conducted in various and settings like educational institutions, companies and public places.

Speaking to OneIndia, Fr George, director of the NGO, said the programme was aimed at sensitising the public on the significance of eye donation. Though 30 lakh people in India suffered from corneal blindness that could be cured by eye donation, not many were coming forward. Nearly 30,000 corneas were being collected every year against the demand of 30 lakh, he said and hoped the event would help bridge the gap.

Dr Jayanth Kumar, who is visually challenged encouraged students to perform well despite their blindness, as he shared his life story with us. ''Since India has over 15 million blind persons which are accounting to one-third of the blind population, as per WHO. Three million of these visually challenged persons could see again through eye donation. But only 68409 people donated their eyes last year despite nine million deaths as per National Program for the Control of Blindness(NPCB),'' Kumar also said.

''The number of persons who donated eyes in Karnataka was only 5561. Whereas neighbouring Tamil Nadu had almost double than this - 10,504, topping the national list,'' he stressed.

To express solidarity with the visually challenged people, the 'World Blind Walk' event will also be organised at 200+ locations across India, Sri Lanka, China, Philippines, and Canada.

The 'Blind Walk' aims to spread the message of the beauty in a world without barriers, discrimination and biases. The goal is to promote togetherness among people coming from various backgrounds.

Those interested may also pledge by sending an SMS in this format: TPV Your Name Place and send it to 7039670396. Once, the SMS is sent, you will get a return SMS with instructions.

For eye donation in Karnataka alone, the number for coordination is 104 or contact eye banks directly or can also contact Project Vision (9448071973).

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