We are very happy to feature Sristi KC as first “MONTH’S HERO” of youth legend.
Blinds are Diamonds.
Everyone sees diamonds, but only a few can afford it. Likewise, everyone sees us, but only few can accept us.
Sristi KC, 23 years, was born in Kathmandu as a younger sister to two brothers. She lost her vision while she was studying in grade 8. Since then, her life took a different turn; her understanding of vision became retrospective. She thought it was temporary. Her family also had a hope that she will see one day because only seeing again was the best solution.
“We went to so many hospitals. But, nothing happened. Slowly I began to adjust myself. Yet I hold on and believed that I only missed my sight — I had my functional hands, leg and a curious mind intact with my body to carry on.”
She was a teenager aspired to get college degree. It was her dream to go to college in neat college attire, however no college would take her in, given to their lack of infrastructures to address her requirements. But thankfully, she got admission to Dillibazar Kanya Multiple Campus , thanks to one of the ministers at that time. Though, she could not study the subject of her choice but she realized that at least she got this opportunity that should not be missed.
KC used to study by hearing. Then, she used recorder to record classes in college. She created the material of wood on her own to study. And it worked. She topped the college and country exam’s too for which she got rewarded with medal from The President of Nepal. She also started competing in various programs like dance, essay, poem, etc. She completed her Bachelor in Sociology from the same college.
Sristi had a big interest in dancing. In her free time, she thought of learning dance. But, again, none of the dancing institution was ready to teach her. “They didn’t believe me that I could dance.”
It was again a pinching moment for her. Then, she made up her mind that if they won’t teach her how to dance she’ll learn it by herself and will teach other blind people to dance. After that, she organized Dance workshop for blind for the first time.
She got an opportunity to study a seven month course related to social entrepreneurship at Kanthari International, Kerala, India. Till some time, she worked in the same college in different projects. With more confidence and ideas she came back and founded an organization, ‘Blind Rocks’.
How I transformed my pain into power?
It was tough for me to accept the sudden trauma of not being able to see in my life. But, slowly I started to explore the positive aspects of being blind.
Positive aspects of being Blind(visually impaired)
1.High concentration power/High focus
Before being blind, I was never first in study and after being blind I was never second. Since, I could not see, I did not get distracted by so many visual things.
2. Better communication skill
Speaking is the only way to make people understand what we are feeling. And to understand people, we also need to hear them properly. And this results to better communication skill with people.
3. Increase in problem solving skills
We need to develop different skills to adjust in the society. We use cane to walk around. I could not write that’s why I created wooden material to write. In this way, our problem solving skills gets increased.
4. Public Relation
We meet different people while walking, travelling in vehicles every day. People come to talk with us and we also need to speak with people for asking help.
People are amazed to see diamonds, they are also amazed and are so much curious seeing us whether we laugh, dance, sit, and walk or do anything.
How people treated me? How I transformed people’s reaction to me?
Though I could not see from my eyes, I was the same person with the same feeling, with a dream of doing something in my life. But, people started to see me as a different person, they take me as a useless thing who can’t do anything in life and even think of me like my life is over.
People discriminated me, but I had not discriminated myself. I was the same person. I had the inner determination that I will show them one day.
My mom was blamed for my blindness for not taking proper care of me. At that time, I said to myself, “One day I will make my mom proud. One day she will proudly say my daughter is blind and I am proud of her.”
Sometime people ask stupid questions like how do you eat, how do you take a bath. And I replied to them, “Do you eat or bath seeing mirror?”
- When I first joined college, I was the only blind. Neither I used to speak with anyone nor did anyone speak with me. I had a humiliation within me too. But, after being first in college, slowly people started to talk to me. I made many friends. I started helping them, they started helping me.
By this, I realized that if you start exploring your capacity and get empowered, automatically people will get close to you. We should not be passive recipient only. We should be contributor too.
- If I ever get lost on the way and
when I say ‘Excuse Me’, only aware, conscious and positive person will respond to me.
Only good people come close to us, others gets filtered.
Idea behind Blind Rocks and its activities
Till I was in college, I was struggling with my life, trying to make my life better. Then I got the feeling that I should do something for the society too. We, the blind are no lesser than anyone. People have created limitations for us, but our fate lies in our hand so let us decide that. Let us decide whether we can do something or not.
I felt blind should rock and formed the organization “Blind Rocks”. We conduct various workshops related to interpersonal skills, personality development, body language, non-verbal communication, Dance and fashion.
I am blind does not mean that I don’t have right to look good, I should not have good hairstyle or wear fashionable clothes. So, we provide workshop to blind related fashion and dressing sense.
Born blind have no idea about body language; non-verbal communication, etc. and we are addressing this issue and working for the personality development of blind person too.
We also have been organizing adventurous tour for blind people like rafting, hiking, paragliding. Also we organize street drama and various training programs for awareness and empowerment of blind people.
In TV Serials, media or even on movies we blind are represented as miserable character. Through blind rocks we also want to challenge those shows that we blind people are not helpless. Our life is rocking and we are rocking.
I realized the problem of blind is same in the world – over protection or discrimination. So, I did not limit the organization to Nepal only. I had also conducted workshops in Russia too.
- Giving continuity to all workshops and try to reach remote areas of Nepal and other countries.
- Promote blind model.
- Organize Mr and Miss blind beauty pageant.
- Organize sharing workshop from experts of different fields.
Message to young people
Be incharge of your life. Only we should determine limitations and borders of our lives. At first let’s love and respect ourselves and then only you are able to give love and respect to others.