On 2nd November 2023, an interactive session was held at Noor e Sehar Special Education School to commemorate White Cane Safety Day and International Day of Sign Languages. This event brought together educators and students from various neighbouring schools to raise awareness about the importance of white cane safety and the significance of sign languages in the lives of individuals with visual and hearing impairments.
White Cane Safety Day is observed worldwide on October 15th and was first observed in 1964 . The day aims to recognize the significance of the white cane as a symbol of independence and mobility for the visually impaired.
On the other hand, International Day of Sign Languages, celebrated on September 23rd, recognizes the importance of sign languages in the lives of people who are deaf or hard of hearing. The day was officially recognized by the United Nations in 2018 to promote and celebrate the linguistic and cultural diversity of sign languages and the rights of sign language users.
The event witnessed enthusiastic participation from a diverse group of attendees, including teachers from Engro Model School and Mari Model High School, as well as students and teachers from Engro Grammar School.
Commencement of the Event:
The event commenced with a sense of patriotism as students with Hearing Impairment presented the National Anthem in Sign Language. Following the anthem, a visually impaired student delivered a recitation of the Holy Quran.
Principal Muhammad Shafi welcomed the attendees and expressed his gratitude for their presence, emphasizing the importance of inclusivity and awareness in the community.
White Cane Safety Presentation:
The highlight of the event was a comprehensive presentation on White Cane Safety by Mr. Shahzad, a Braille expert at NSSES. His informative and engaging presentation shed light on the significance of white canes in the lives of visually impaired individuals, educating the audience on their purpose and proper usage. The interactive nature of the session allowed participants to gain hands-on experience through activities such as a Blindfolded Musical Chair, in which teachers and students actively took part, deepening their understanding of the challenges faced by the visually impaired.
Orientation and Mobility Sensitization:
Principal Muhammad Shafi took the initiative to sensitize the audience about the significance of orientation and mobility for the visually impaired. He emphasized the pivotal role of sighted individuals in breaking down barriers and creating a more inclusive society for those with visual impairments.
Sign Language Session:
The second segment of the event was dedicated to sign language, where Mr. Jawed Hussain and Ms. Niha Haroon led a presentation on Hearing Impairment and Sign Language. Their informative session highlighted the importance of sign language as a means of communication for those with hearing impairments. Attendees were given the opportunity to learn basic sign language, including the English alphabet, numbers, colour names, and animal names. The audience was highly engaged in this interactive session, actively participating and learning to communicate using sign language.
To conclude the event, Ms. Sana Ahsan, Academic Coordinator at NSSES, delivered vote of thanks to the esteemed guests and attendees. The Interactive Sessions not only raised awareness about the challenges faced by individuals with visual and hearing impairments but also facilitated the learning of practical skills and communication methods. The event showcased the power of inclusivity and education, bringing together educators and students from various backgrounds to support a more inclusive and understanding society.