International Day of Persons with Disabilities observed in Mokokchung’s Ungma village

Mokokchung: Theme speaker emphasizes importance of institutional and organisational involvement, caregiver support, and individual contributions

BY | Monday, 4 December, 2023
Bendangrenla S LKR, Asst. Prof. Dept. of English Fazl Ali College, Mokokchung

The International Day of Persons with Disabilities, themed “United in Action to Rescue and Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) For, with and by Persons with Disabilities,” was organised by NSRLM MKG and MDDF at AROK SAPANG, Ungma Village Mokokchung on December 3, 2023. The event featured Bendangrenla S LKR, Asst. Prof. Dept. of English FAC, as the Theme Speaker.

Addressing the audience, Bendangrenla S LKR highlighted the eleven goals of the Sustainable Development Goals, emphasizing the eradication of poverty, environmental protection, and fostering peace and prosperity by 2030. The theme she translates as “Leave no one Behind” underscored the collective effort needed, focusing on revealing and reflecting key areas, such as creating disabled-friendly infrastructures and dispelling superstitions and stigma associated with Persons With Disabilities (PwDs).

Bendangrenla also highlighted the needs and challenges faced by PWDs, drawing insights from the Bible, particularly John chapter 9. Stressing collaboration on three levels, she emphasized the importance of institutional and organisational involvement, caregiver support, and individual contributions.

Despite the ambitions of achieving Sustainable Development Goals, Bendangrenla acknowledged the long journey ahead, particularly citing the lack of basic amenities and specialist education for PWDs in the state. She called for a critical review of existing policies and emphasized the role of churches in combating social stigma.

Katibenla presenting a special song on 3rd December 2023

Rev. Prof. Dr. Mar Pongener, Executive Secretary, ABAM, in his speech encouraged recognising abilities and disabilities, referencing Psalm 139 verse 14. He announced ABAM’s upcoming Certification and Assistance camp at Impur, collaborating with Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO) and District Disabilities Rehabilitation Centre, Dimapur, to provide medical aid.

A representative from the District Administration, highlighted the prevalence of disabilities with age and outlined Mission Shakti’s schemes. She urged Persons with Disabilities and caretakers to update necessary documents for verification, ensuring assistance from the District administration.

Arenlila Jamir, Project Associate Caritas India, emphasized the significance of the day, commemorated annually since 1992. She challenged the audience to consider their own vulnerability to disability and encouraged a broader understanding of PwDs’ needs.

A representative from Ungma Village Council shared inspirational stories of achievements by Persons with Disabilities, rallying support for uplifting and encouraging PwDs.

Molung Imsong presented a special song for PwDs and Katibenla presented a special song from PwDs.

Molung Imsong presenting a special song on 3rd December 2023

Senyangerla, President MDPAPwDs Apok, Counsellor UBC, spoke on behalf of parents, representing the voice of the parents of PwDs. The program was chaired by Rongsenlila BPM NSRLM Ongpangkong North, and Rev. Jongpong, Pastor Mopungchuket Baptist Church, pronounced the invocation. Imkongnungchet Kichu, President MDDF, delivered the vote of thanks, and Lemtila Peter APW Mokokchung Baptist Church offered a special prayer for Persons with Disabilities.

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