Focus on disability rights

2019-11-13 06:01
Babsy Mlangeni (76) South Africa’s legendary blind singer. Photo: Teboho Setena

Babsy Mlangeni (76) South Africa’s legendary blind singer. Photo: Teboho Setena

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The rights of people with disabilities, their plight and their triumph take centre stage through a series of dedicated activities already underway until 3 December.

Activities commenced on 3 November with the launch of the Disability Rights Awareness Month programme by the Free State Performing Arts and Transport of People with Disability (FSPATPD).

The month-long campaign raises awareness of the harmful effects of stigmatisation, prejudice and stereotyping of persons with disabilities.

The Free State’s Disability Rights Awareness Month programme includes employment awareness advocating for access of persons with disabilities in the public and private sector.

The FSPATPD spearheads the two-fold initiative aimed at showcasing capabilities of people with physical disabilities.

This is under the theme “#PutYourselfInMyShoes”.

Benard Tshabalala, coordinator, says the theme challenges the public to embrace persons with disabilities as part of society.

“Through the various festivities, the FSPATPD aims at raising public awareness of the existing barriers that prevent citizens with disabilities from full and equal participation in all aspects of their community. We seek interventions about what can be done to correct these problems.

“We also celebrate achievements by some of the persons with disabilities and examples of best practices. We strive for the advancements towards inclusion of citizens with disabilities.”

According to Tshabalala, the month’s interactive programme offers an opportunity for all to remove barriers and strive for improvement to the quality of life of people with disabilities through practical actions.

The provincial Disability Month highlights will be the staging of and Arts Festival in Bloemfontein from 28 November until 3 December.

It makes provision for visual arts, fine arts, crafts, performing arts, flea markets and a beauty pageant.

Expected performing artists at the main event on 30 November are Steve Kekana, Babsy Mlangeni, Sgwili, Joe Nina, Thabang Nkuka, Ta-Morutsi, Dj Blind, Miss Jay and Thoko Nogabe.

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