Tag Archives: The Philippines

Association of Disabled Persons-Iloilo

Moved by the Second National Congress for the Disabled Persons, some residents in Jaro, Iloilo established the Association of Disabled Persons-Iloilo, Incorporated (ADP-II) in 1990.

Its members has grown to 800 since then to “integrate persons with disabilities (PWDs) into mainstream of society” in collaboration with local government units, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Health (DOH), private sectors, non-government organizations (NGOs), and other disabled persons organizations (DPOs) in municipalities.

ADP-II has been empowering the different PWD organizations in the 43 local government units (LGUs) in Iloilo. Its services aim to embolden even the children in the region in support of the Christian Blind Mission (CBM), Lilliane Stitching Funds (SLF), Association Soeur Emmanuelle (ASMAE), and Commission on Population (POPCOM).

The CBM, SLF, ASMAE, and POPCOM are NGOs in Germany, the Netherlands, France, and the Philippines respectively.

ADP-II has also initiated some income-generating programs such as the May ‘K’ Park, a restaurant that is the first and the longest running business of the association since 1993; comfort rooms and case-by-case cards, which is funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA); and prosthesis making.

In 2002, ADP-II has formed the ADPI Multi-purpose Cooperative (ADPIMPC), which provided livelihood and promoted technologies that facilitate mobility to its members. It has also assisted during the relief operations after the devastation of typhoons Frank and Yolanda as well in putting up the Aging and Disability Focal Point (ADFP) in Estancia and Concepcion.

Currently, ADP-II keeps the radio program “K-Forum,” which is aired in the GMA Network, a media company in the Philippines, every Sundays at 2:00-3:00 p.m. It also maintains a website, an email, and a social networking account.

Video taken from the YouTube Channel of Tomotatsu Gima

Acknowledgments: Bob Flores and May

Low Vision

Low vision is the most common disability in the Philippines since 1995.

It is the loss of eyesight caused by an eye disease, eye cancer, albinism, or brain injury. These conditions, although more common in older people, can occur at any age. It is not, however, affected by the normal aging of eye.

Low vision has four types. It is macular degeneration when one’s central vision is blurry. It is glaucoma when one’s peripheral vision is fading. A distorted vision characterizes diabetic retinopathy, while a hazy one typifies cataract.

Since low vision can’t be helped nowadays (and the Philippines has remained a Third World country), it will be wise to exert a little effort in mitigating its effects. Cover wood tables and shiny counters to reduce glare. Sit close to the TV to make things appear bigger.

Organize items in the refrigerator. Label medications with markers or rubber bands. Use electronic books, audio books, and other reading services. Do not be shy to ask for help and prefer using public transit systems.

Certain advances in consumer electronics also offer people with low vision an option to improve the quality of their lives. There are e-readers, which are more affordable than closed circuit televisions (CCTVs) that allow its users to adjust display settings or ‘hear’ thought its text-to-speech functionality.

Smartphones and tablets—both Apple- or Android-based—offer a range of applications and built-in functions to help people with low vision, too. iRead, iLoupe, and Magnify can illuminate text. EyeNote can scan and identify a US paper money.

SightBook can measure a visual function. MapQuest can provide voice-guided directions on where to turn. Siri can check the weather, email, or calendar of the user without him or her having to type.

Of course, these innovations in consumer technology are not a cure-all; Low vision is a permanent loss. It cannot be improved with eyeglasses, medicine, or surgery. Rehabilitating it could still perk up one’s outlook in life, however. Just make sure that the rehabilitation service offers regular low vision evaluation, prescription for devices, rehabilitation training, home assessment, mobility service, and resource groups.

“There is no better way to thank God for your sight than by giving a helping hand to someone in the dark.” ~Helen Keller

Photos courtesy of webaim.org