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Just think: a Blind Man playing Cricket

May 20 2011

I mention him in Death of a Nightingale. His name is Fred Raffle. He will help you to see the distinction between disability and deprivation. You have to address both. One of the most remarkable things about my involvement as Chair of Governors of a special school for physically disabled children over many years was to discover what a moving and inspirational experience it was. What I found particularly moving was seeing children learning to accept and overcome the difficulties that their disabilities presented them with, and the ever so patient help they received from their dedicated and highly trained teachers, carers and therapists.

Fred Raffle visited my local Rotary Club with his dog Barney to share with us his enthusiasm for the game of cricket, an enthusiasm he gained at a School for the Blind where he and others found a way of playing it with a bag of peas for the ball and a suitcase for the wicket.

The story of Helen Keller is even more astounding.

The moral of the story – you have to cater for deprivation as well as disability.