Category: Africa Written by Nasif and Edited by Syarif Hidayat Hits: 148
Lilongwe, Malawi, 12 Ramadhan 1434/20 July 2013 (MINA) – Helping blind Muslims to pursue their education, an Islamic school has been opened in Malawi to cater for the needs of visually-impaired students in the southern African country.
"We founded this school as a direct response to rising levels of neglect and discrimination Muslims with visual impairments especially children are being subjected to," Ibrahim Amin, a founder of An-Noor Madrassah for the Blind, told OnIslam.net.
This school is located in the commercial city of Blantyre, the school enrols children between 9-21 years of age.
"Because of the stigma attached, most parents are shy to identify themselves with visually impaired children as a result," Amin said.
"The children are being abandoned by their own parents, with no care at all. The children are being deprived of opportunities to access both secular and Islamic education."
Amin, a teacher for children with special needs, said the school caters for both Islamic and secular educational needs of blind Muslim students.
"We teach them Arabic Braille so that at the end of the day, they should know how to read the Qur'an," he said.
"This is an opportunity which was not available in the past for them." For adults, Amin said the school conducts workshops where they learn Arabic Braille to enable them read the Noble Qur'an.
According to Onislam report quoted by MINA, blind Muslims were enrolled in schools run by Christian organizations since 1904, ending up with being converted to Christianity.
"Due to fear of being converted to Christianity, most parents were not willing to send their children to those schools, therefore many of the children were being abandoned," he said.
The birth of this institution has therefore rescued the children and given them another hope by providing their needs in far as care and education is concerned. Islam is the second largest religion in the country after Christianity.
Official statistics suggest Muslims constitute 12 percent of Malawi’s 14 million people, but the umbrella Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) puts the rate at 36. (T/P05/E1)
Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)