Enugu — For years they wallowed in privation and suffering simply because they are indigent, a situation made worse by the fact that many of them are disabled and could barely fend for themselves. Even the hand outs they receive infrequently from kind-hearted individuals could only but meet their survival needs and no more.
But the good news is that respite has at last come to these seemingly hapless individuals with disabilities and special needs. A non profit organisation, Bina Foundation, has rallied to their help by admitting no fewer than 200 of them for its 2017 skills acquisition training.
The foundation said its gesture in this regard was in line with its objective since 2010 to alleviate the pains of the poor and needy by giving them skills training and support. This community of the needy included the blind, the physically and mentally challenged, orphans and children with disability, motherless babies, the deaf-mute, the aged, indigent widows and all those stigmatized and marginalized in the society.
Performing the orientation for the new students, the President and founder of Bina Foundation, Lady Ifeoma Atuegwu, said inspiration for the foundation's humanitarian gesture came by divine means from her late son who was physically-challenged and wished for the establishment of the foundation.
"We are here to help people with different types of disabilities. Nobody is ever sent away from here and the impossibility is made possible here and you will not regret your coming here," Mrs. Atuegwu told the new students.
She noted that the foundation is set to break the barriers which held the challenged persons and bring a new lease of life to them.
"This year, there will be special sports for the blind; it doesn't matter what your challenges are. We will empower you at the end of the one year training; we will give you tools to succeed in life. Not only will you employ yourself but you will also employ others," she said.
Mrs. Atuegwu who noted that the foundation has impacted positively in the lives of people, disclosed the courses for the training as: Basic computer literacy for the blind, Braille reading and writing, mathematics, Science, Daily Living skills, independent living skills, Music Band training, Catering and Fast food, Beads and wire works, Shoe and Bag Making, Cosmetology and Paint making, Hairdressing and Beauty Saloon, Barbing Saloon, Tailoring/fashion Designing/knitting, GSM phone repair and Tv & Radio repair.
"At the end of the training, we will assist you to set up your own, we will employ some but we cannot employ all of you," Mrs. Atuegwu told the students.
The Chairman, Board of Directors of the Foundation, Sir Chris Atuegwu, asked the students to listen attentively during their trainings after which their lives will not remain the same again.
"This is a miracle arena, once you are here, your life cannot be same again and you will not lack anything here. At the end of you training by December, you would say, you are happy to be here," said Sir Atuegwu.
Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi who was represented by his Special Assistant on Youth Affairs, Mr. Emeka Asogwa expressed the state government's readiness to partner with the foundation, adding that governments is working at having every youth in the state acquire skill.
Graduates of the foundations gave different testimonies of how their lives have been transformed after their trainings. Ogonna Akabuogu said "I went through catering, now I supply many customers. I was settled with many things and I thank Mr. and Mrs Atuegwu so much.
Another challenged person, Amarach Eze said she graduated from Beads department. She said "Here I found people like me and the foundation has tried for us because I can now make money through beads. I've been able to further my education and I pray that the lord will continue to strengthen the Atuegwus."
A visually impaired graduate of the foundation who is now a volunteer teacher at the institution, Chudi Emmanuel said. "Bina made me understand a blind person can operate computer, now I can say I am a professor of Computer and I hope to impact many with my skill."
The Governor's representative was conducted round products made by the students of the foundation such as sandals, bags, cosmetics, paints, clothes and many money.
The Governor's representative was also given some of the products to give to the governor for him to use the products.