Our journey to Ngororero District has brought us to the home of Bamporineza Jean de Dieu, a resident of Ngororero District, Nyange Sector, Gaseke Cell in Ngobagoba Village.
Bamporineza who lost his sight in 1978, explains that before being supported by RUB he lived a life that he felt was meaningless. However, after starting to receive RUB support service including attending various courses meant for Persons with Visual impairment, his life started to change.
Commenting on the importance of the white cane towards improved living condition, Bamporineza said “The white cane helps me because it prevents me from falling into the potholes, and also when I have it, it gives me safety especially when I am walking on a busy road.”
“This white cane is like the eye for the blind. I compare it to the eye and to life, when you have it, it allows you to walk and get out of loneliness.” He testifies.
“The scars that you can see on my legs were due to the difficult life that I was living without white cane. I used to fall and get injured.
However, I continued to struggle because I wanted to learn to live with my disability.” He said.
He goes back to the time when he used a wooden stick and found that it really did not give respect to the user, and most of the time it was very likely to cause accidents. He says that in the past, a person with visual impairment was someone portrayed as a beggar. “Now you can notice that a person with visual impairment having received RUB training, will not go to the market to beg for sweet potatoes because that habit has become obsolete.”
Returning to his role in the development of his family with the support of a white cane, Bamporineza says that for example he is able to earn some money from his work and can rent a land for his wife to farm and even pay for farmers to help her. “And with the help of a white cane, I can perform home chores such as cooking, cleaning or washing clothes. As well, the white cane guides me when I am drawing water, and so on.” Bamporineza affirmed.
“When you don’t have a white cane, leaving home is hard and difficult for you, but when you have it, you go with no worries. And if someone tries to abuse you, when taken to court, he is severely punished because it is obvious that he/she has attacked a person with visual impairment, and this is to emphasize the rights of persons with disabilities. Bamporineza highlights the great importance for all persons with visual impairment to be given a white cane.