Aashitaru : Ordinary People’s Extraordinary Stories

It isn’t everyday that we come across people who, in spite of their disabilities, find their inner strength and strive to live life on their own terms … Mr. Sandesh H R, a visually impaired computer trainer, is one such inspiring person.  He lost his sight at the young age of seven. Initially he started schooling at special school for the visually impaired but his parents wanted him to have an inclusive education and so they enrolled him in a regular school. He is a proud alumnus of MES School, Jayanagar which admitted him despite his disability. He studied there till the 10th grade, following which he completed his secondary studies and graduation through distance education. Today he works at Enable India as a computer trainer for the visually impaired. He values his role as a teacher and takes great pride in ensuring that his students are placed in organizations.

His greatest strength is his family. And his father, Mr Ravindra Nath H R, is immensely proud of his son’s achievements.

“He was bold and confident. He had even managed to become independent which is very challenging for the visually impaired.”

Sandesh says that the most important quality he imbibed from his father was his courage. His mother, Mrs. Latha always gave him a lot of moral support. When he was younger he used to ask her why he was suffering when hadn’t done anything wrong. She always told him that his blindness should not define his life. It was very hard for her to accept his reality at first but nonetheless, she supported him throughout his struggle. Even though she went to a Telugu medium school, she taught herself to read Kannada. In the same way, Sandesh had learnt to convert all his textbooks to Braille and studied all night to keep up with his classmates.

His younger brother Pavan H R, speaks about his fondest memory of the time they used to ride the same bicycle.

“Pavan would take the front seat but Sandesh always peddled together with him. He also played cricket with the neighbourhood kids and cousins instead of sitting on the sidelines. He always tried to do everything that the other children did including household chores. From a young age he knew that he wanted to lead a normal life”

At Enable India, his students consider him as their role model. Some of his star students are Dhanalakshmi, Nethra and Rakesh whom he bonds with the most. It is his wish that they also find jobs and become independent like him. Since the students come from all over the country to participate in training, he takes it upon himself to convince all their apprehensive family members. He is thankful to his first computer trainer, Ms. Vidya Rao and Ms. Shanthi Raghavan- the founder trustee of Enable India. He also mentions his friend and colleague Mr. Shivkumar who has always been there with him and says thanks to all his other co-workers.

Such success stories are not only a source of hope for the differently abled but also for the people around them. Encouragement and positivity can bring about change and make life much easier for them. Sandesh truly is an inspiration.

Tune in to Radio Active and listen to the daily show on Aashitaru –Monday to Saturday 2.00 pm to 2.30pm, for more such stories

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