Mangalore: Roman and Catherine School for the Blind – Kindling Hope for Future

Source: Daiji world

Pics by Manju Neereshwallya
Daijiworld Media Network – Mangalore (SP)

Mangalore, Nov 19: With the setting up of a new, full-fledged school for the blind children of Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and neighbouring districts, ‘Roman and Catherine School for the Blind’ at 3rd Cross, Kotekani Road, Kapikad, Bejai Post, Mangalore – 575 004, a new beginning has been made.
It had been a dream of both Dr U V Shenoy and ‘Seva Bharathi Trust’ since the last two decades, to establish a school exclusively for the blind. The dream has come true now, in the form of the above school.
The name of Carmine Lobo, because of whose relentless efforts, she and ‘Seva Bharathi’ have joined hands to shape a better future for the blind children of the region, deserves a special mention. ‘Seva Bharathi,’ under the guidance of Dr U V Shenoy, has the experience of running a school in the city exclusively for the mentally challenged, named ‘Chetana Child Development Centre’ at V T Road.










In the past, the visually impaired children were compelled to stay away from their homes and loved ones to study in blind schools functioning in far away cities. Now, the children would be able to study in a residential school for the blind, located close by.
In the residential school, in addition to providing informal and formal education, free boarding and lodging facilities apart from uniforms, toilet items like soap, toothpaste etc., are provided to the children. The needs of every child are taken care of and met.
In Roman and Catherine School (named after the parents of Carmine Lobo) for the Blind, formal education as per the Karnataka Education Board syllabus is imparted. In addition, computer education, computer skills, etc., are taught with the help of JAWS popular screen reading/talking software. Screen magnification software is used for teaching computer applications to the children suffering from partial visual impairment. Other informal methods like orientation and mobility, independent living, handicrafts, special games like cricket, chess etc., are also used to improve the skills of the students. With the consent of the parents or guardians of the students, medical care requirements of the students would be taken care of by the school.
The school aims at imparting education in various subjects from first to seventh standard in Braille (script used for reading and writing by the visually impaired), which includes English, Kannada, Hindi, Science, Mathematics, Social Studies, Physical Education, Moral Education, etc. After the seventh standard, the student is admitted into a high school as per the new integrated education policy of the government under ‘Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan’. Even in this case, the student will be housed in the blind school premises, and proper counseling and career guidance would be provided with the help of specially trained personnel.
The school said in a release, that its aim is to make the people of Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and other surrounding districts aware that disability is neither a disease, nor a curse, but that it is a problem that can be solved through proper guidance and rehabilitation. It wants to enable the visually challenged children to stand on their own feet by creating opportunities for them with the hope that they will play an important role in nation building.
The school has requested the people to inform the families of blind children in their vicinity, about the school and convince them of the necessity to send such children to the blind school. It also solicits donations towards recurring expenses, towards acquiring assets like furniture/fixtures/computers/Braille books and materials etc., or in the form of sponsoring a child in the school. Volunteers interested to serve during their free time are also welcome, the school said. It also stated that for details and further information, Dr U V Shenoy may be contacted on mobile No. +919845047785 or on School Telephone No 0824-2458552 or Calistus D’sa’s Mobile No: +91 9945421892 and by e-mail: rclsb@rediffmail.com

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