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Visit to the Malaysian Association for The Blind (MAB): An Insight into the Life of the Blind

05 May 2022

The community keeps emphasising that there is no difference between sighted people and blind people at all times. Are there really no differences? In fact, the stereotypical statement is meant to encourage the blind to keep pace with the era. We could only tell the difference if we were in their shoes, perhaps. As we have heard, visually impaired individuals possess quality auditory sense, and this is one of the basic senses for them to navigate the world. Hence, the fallacy of blinding one’s own admirable sense of hearing is always a point of discussion. As a matter of fact, sighted people rely on vision, whereas blind people rely on auditory perception.

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller

Genuinely, I have never been to any disability centre or encountered any disabled people in the past. As a result, I am extremely grateful for this extraordinary opportunity to educate myself about the world of blind. Hereby, I acknowledge our lecturer, Tan Woei Ling’s efforts in introducing to us, the IMU Nursing students, to the Malaysia Association of the Blind (MAB) in Kuala Lumpur by organising an unforgettable educational visit on 11 April 2022.


Author of this article, Tan Cai Ing (on the third from the right), with her lecturer and course mates during the visit.

Foremost, we received a warm welcome speech from the staff before the tour began.

From the talk, I have learnt four facts about blindness:
Visually impaired individuals do not have enhanced senses
They are able to utilise smart gadgets
Not all blind people see darkness
Blind people do not have to look blind.

Besides, we should gratefully shout out to the 21st century invention, the smart phone, which includes the function of a screen reader and is friendly and accessible for the vision-impaired individual. On top of that, we were introduced to several user-friendly applications that are extremely useful and convenient such as the Cash Reader and the Seeing AI app.

Furthermore, we were brought to the library for the blind, and I ran into a blind elderly man who was typing Braille code using the Braille typewriter. We were lucky enough to have this opportunity to learn Braille, and we even managed to type our own name using the Braille typewriter under the elderly man’s guidance. Plainly speaking, it is not an easy task to type a sentence without vision.

“Open your eyes and think again if you think your life is hard.”

Personally, I do not believe fairness exists if there is any difference in today’s world. There are certainly differences between sighted and non-sighted people, lifestyle and habits, for instance. Life is only fair to everyone when death comes, as each of us will have the same ending. Struggling is everywhere in everyone’s life story. Adapting and solution-finding are the main keys to survival. Written by Tan Cai Ing, NU 1/19, Year 3 Semester 6 Edited and reviewed by: Ms Tan Woei-Ling & Dr Lim Swee Geok

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