Article written

  • on 09.04.2014
  • at 03:00 PM
  • by Kevin Hind

Open Your Eyes Kenya 0


“Close your eyes for a minute and enter my world”, these words still replay on my mind after watching Susan’s video-a video that tells the story of what the visually impaired children go through. The struggles they go to to adjust and to finally accept that they will no longer see the world like everybody sees it and to adopt to a world not designed for them.


Informed by the relationship between Safaricom foundation and inable in supporting Thika School for the blind, Safaricom has created an awareness initiative dubbed Open Your Eyes Kenya determined to  empower over 300,000 Kenyans who are visually impaired including Susan  and give them the opportunity to pursue their dreams. Susan who is the face of the initiative represents many other visually impaired children and they finally have a reason to smile because this move by Safricom provides a challenge to the Government of Kenya to make all their websites accessible so that they too can access resources.

During the launch at the Thika School for the blind yesterday, the looks on the childrens’ faces was priceless and the different talents in them were evident. From sports to music and technology, the students proved that disability is not inability and as they surfed the internet, they could not hide their excitement because for once in their life, they could finally make out what is going on. It was quite an emotional moment when 17-year old Nelson Otieno was giving his thoughts on the new website. Speaking to  Corporate Affairs Director Nzioka Waita, he said..

“This one is much better. It’s better organised and while I can’t see the pictures, at least I have an idea of what they are,” 

and the excitement on his face as he listened in through his headphones and navigated through the website using the cursor keys said alot- that it was something that they had all been waiting for and that they finally saw themselves closer to their dreams. “We were mteja but are now connected thanks to Safricom“, the rest of the children sang.

Thika School for the Blind is a place with so much talent and has produced some of the country’s biggest personalities- Denno (Dennis Karanja) the musician who is mostly famous for his Mbona hit with Gospel star Daddy Owen was present during the launch as an alumnus and he urged everyone to look in to the needs of the children. He went on to perform his track and many others with Daddy Owen and the students joined in on the dancing. In him, they see someone who is like them and are inspired to chase their dreams because Denno’s success shows them that they can be whatever they want to be in life.

The Headteacher of Thika School of the Blind Jotham Makokha even made a joke that “as you well know, those born blind aren’t usually very good dancers as they’ve never seen anyone move; so they need more practice.” but was serious in his speech as he urged Safaricom not to go and forget them like many other institutions before them, who visited the children with many promises but forgot all about them as soon as they left the school.

Here is the touching video and Safaricom has offered to pay 1 Khs. for every view of the video to be donated to activities involving the visually impaired (Read more about the initiative Here),


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Direttore Responsabile Giuseppe Frangi