Sahaara Charitable Society has been gifting dreams to various underprivileged sections in the city of Mumbai since 1994. Project Prakash has been working with the visually challenged population. We are pleased to share two “dreams” gifted through the activities of Project Prakash.
By Arthur Thangiah
Imagine that you are blindfolded and you have to walk. The 7 million visually challenged people of India face this reality every day but are able to quell the challenge with a walking stick in their hand.
Sahaara conducts a picnic every year for the visually challenged and approximately 50 visually challenged people from across the city attend the picnic. This picnic is a real fun and feasting time for the participants and also serves as the meeting place for them. This year, the picnic was organised at the Gorai beach. It was attended by 42 visually challenged people and 8 children.
The annual get together culminates with gifts being distributed to the visually challenged. As per the assessment carried out during our visits to the centres, the key need of the people were walking sticks. Hence new walking sticks were distributed to each of the visually challenged people in attendance. There was a great joy among them as they received the sticks. One of them said, “Yesterday I lost my walking stick and I was wondering how I would survive in the city without one. Today God has answered my prayer and given me a new walking stick.” All sighted volunteers who had come to help in the picnic were visibly moved!
Relationships built through Project Prakash have resulted in a group of ten to fifteen visually challenged people attending the Andheri church every Sunday. The foundation course, a series of 13 lessons on the basics of the Christian life, has been developed in the Braille language and it is a very pleasant sight to see the visually challenged opening up the huge Braille books and undergoing the foundation course.
Sandeep Suresh Kirjat lost his sight due to sickness at the tender age of five years. He belonged to a single parent household, his mother being the sole guardian. He started attending the church meeting and enrolled in the foundation course. As the lessons were being taught, Sandeep Suresh Kirjat was touched and the light of the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ shone in his heart and he voluntarily expressed the desire to undertake water baptism!
Much to our delight, he publicly testified along with his wife that they would unconditionally follow the Lord Jesus all their lives and went through the waters of baptism! He has been walking in the light ever since!
For more information on Sahaara, click here.