Inspirational People

Creating an Impact for the Visually Challenged in India: IAB

Journey of IAB – A 10 minute Movie:

Indian Association for the Blind (IAB) is an organization based out of Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India that works to educate, train and rehabilitate visually impaired persons. I met their representatives at the recently concluded Chennai Pongal Book Fair 2016 and was impressed with the books and articles they had in display to help blind people read. They gave me a CD containing the above embedded video – I think all of us should see it.

IAB is located in a village called Sundarrajan patti on the outskirts of Madurai. It was created under the leadership of the great visionary Shri S. M. A. Jinnah in 1985. Since inception, it seems IAB has educated and rehabilitated more than 6000 visually challenged students.

“Public is overestimating the problems of the blind people and underestimating their potential.” – S. M. A. Jinnah.

IAB has a state-of-the-art Computerized Braille Press in their campus that produces printed materials accessible in the Braille format. Some books made available by their press include,

  • Thirukkural
  • Wings of Fire – Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
  • Tamil to English dictionary
  • Puthiya Thalaimurai – A popular Tamil magazine for the youth
  • Vizhichaval – A monthly magazine in braille run by and for the visually challenged

They had displayed some of their books and materials at the book fair,

“Blind people should prove themselves; they must work hard to become a regular citizen to the maximum possible extant.” – S. M. A. Jinnah. 

Following the above vision of their founder, IAB has made available the following facilities at their campus:

Skill training initiatives:

  • Braille Press
  • Voice Recording Library
  • Computer Literacy
  • Music Orchestra
  • Book binding

Access to education services:

  • Higher secondary school
  • Integrated education from Class 1 to Post Graduation
  • Braille Library
  • Tutorial center for distance education
  • Lending library

IAB has assisted and enabled visually impaired people to work both on campus and in mainstream institutions like schools/colleges, banks, telephone operators, call centers/BPO, etc.

Employment opportunities at their campus include,

  • Tata IAB Call Center
  • Deflashing unit in collaboration with Hi Tech Arai Pvt. Ltd, Madurai
  • Light Engineering unit that makes fold-able canes for the visually challenged

IAB has won many awards since their inception, including the National Award for the Best Institution – 2007 from the Honorable President of Government of India, Ms. Prathiba Patil.

You should read the inspiring story of Shri. S. M. A. Jinnah, the founder of IAB, who lost both his parents when he was very young, and then lost his eye sight due to a road accident. He not only ensured to complete his school education rising from a hopeless situation, but also completed his college degree in flying colors, rising above even non-impaired students!

For further information, visit the IAB website.

Destination Infinity

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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