Eleven female para-athletes took home several prizes at the 9th National Deaf and Blind Para Judo Championship, held in Lucknow from March 18 to 21.
Members of the winning team won one gold, three silver, and six bronze medals. They are all from Hoshangabad and Jabalpur. The Madhya Pradesh-based team also took home the runner-up trophy.
The squad members were among more than 60 young women who received self-defence training from Sightsavers in Madhya Pradesh.
Women who are mentally challenged are more vulnerable to sexual assault. Sightsavers has worked to educate visually impaired people and hopes to change the situation by teaching judo (martial arts) to visually impaired women in Madhya Pradesh.
Sightsavers aims to boost women’s trust and encourage them to be more active in public by offering judo training to visually challenged women in the state. Some of these women have gone on to become judo instructors, while others have competed in national level events, earning medals for the state.
In a statement, R.N. Mohanty, CEO of Sightsavers India, said, “This is an excellent and tremendously proud time for us at Sightsavers.” These youngsters are setting a good example and demonstrating to everyone that a visually impaired person can do anything.”