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Blind persons can do more than full eyesight people

Silva Dorago a physically blind Massager at the Buluk Eye Clinic

 

By Kitab A Unango

Though physically blind, Silva Dorago sees very clearly with his hands. He calls them “Seeing Hands” the name he adapted for his massage parlor located at Buluk Eye Clinic at the heart of Juba Town.

The 38 year old brags of this establishment that has literally put bread on his table for the last five years, a venture he has never regretted.

His business came to being when a Cambodian Catholic priest, whom he only remembers by his first name John, made the suggestion that he should adopt a life changing skill to ensure he never slept hungry. Silva found it very useful. He rode on the idea, clinging on to it like his life depended on it. It literally did: it still does.

He went back to the priest, announcing that he had accepted the proposition to be trained as a massager especially since such kind of business was unheard of in the country.  It was the first of its kind to be established in South Sudan, but toying with the concept still excited him.

“I never thought of such business till my eyes were opened by the Cambodia priest. I was excited about the idea because I believed it would help me especially since I lost my parents at an early age and my blindness barred me from living a “normal” life,” he said.

The training took two different phrases. For a whole month he was trained on the human anatomy while the other three months were about massage techniques.

It was the fourth month that literally changed his life. Silva stands as the only massager who deals with the expatriates in South Sudan.

His center continues to attract both nationals and foreigners in the country.

“I have local and international clients who pay different rates. South Sudanese residents pay SSP2000 while foreigners pay USD 15 per hour,” Silva added.

The business now is the sole source of income to him and his kin.

“I support my entire family through the cash that I earn from my business,” Silva said.

He only not sleeps and eats from this trade but has also created job opportunity for one more person.

“I have an errand person who also cleans and maintains hygiene at my work place”, he added.

Silva was born in 1980 in Yambio Town the capital of former Western Equatorial State. The mother died when he was still young. He could see clearly until 2003 when he developed eye complications.

“I was not born blind. I fell ill when I was 21 years old. Two years later I woke up and could see nothing. I was totally blind. It was traumatizing at first but I learnt to live with my blindness. I’m so proud that I can even do more than what some people with full eye sight cannot attempt,” he added.

Silva has a heart to help the community, an urge that has seen him develop a kitty to pay fees for secondary school children from his earning.

He also chose to go back to school.

“I started schooling in 1997 but dropped out because there was no one to pay my school fees. I got engaged in manual labour till I raised enough cash to go back to class. Unfortunately in the middle of my studies I contracted eye disease that made me to stop schooling for two years,” he added.

In 2006 he joined Rejaf Education Center for the blind where he sat for his Primary School Certificate. After passing his examinations he was enrolled at Juba Day Secondary Scholl in 2012.

He is currently pursuing a degree in Physiology at the University of Juba.

“I am in my third year. I want to finish my studies next year, get married and settle with a family of my own,” he added.

 

 

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