By Yannason Duncan
In the populated Amerindian village, of Capoey, on the Essequibo Coast, resides a family, who suffers from visual impairment. Three out of five members of the Thomas family are visually impaired.
One was born blind and another lost his sight to cataract. Eighty-two-year-old Hugh Percy Thomas, recounted losing his sight in 2003, while he was preparing a cup of tea. Reflecting on that sad day which has forever changed his life, Thomas vividly recalled experiencing severe pains in both of his eyes, which he said lasted for minutes.
“Because the pain was so severe, I decided to pray. I became blind.” The very humble, Christian-minded elder whose, 54-year-old, daughter, Thelma Thomas, suffers from visual impairment recently learnt that his wife, Theresa Thomas, is nearsighted. He said that he is however grateful for God’s grace that continues to linger within his family. Thomas hails from Wakapoa.
The elderly man said that he believes in humility and simplicity and although he is perceived as being poor, in the eyes of humankind, he considers himself rich in the eyes of God.
Thomas added that he presently lives on an old age pension of $7,500. His wife, Theresa also receives $7,500 and daughter, Thelma, receives $5,500 as public assistance.
The family who gets around, with the assistance of Theresa, who uses a stick to guide her husband and daughter, said the family is presently adapting to their new environment. Thomas, who previously functioned as an elder, in at the Seventh Day Adventist church, in Wakapoa, the place of his birth said that as a farmer, he cultivated coconut, cassava, yam, cassava and coffee.
Thelma, who was born blind, is 54-years-old and never attended school, due to the inability to see. However, although the woman cannot see this has not hampered her from making herself useful, in and around her home.
During the day, Thelma takes care of all of the household duties, which include washing her parents clothing and tidying the yard.
The family, who has been the recent recipients of a Food for the Poor home almost two years ago, at Capoey, said that it is currently in need of a water tank.
“Because of not having a water tank, we usually have to fetch water to use from the canal some distance away.”
Philomena, Thomas’s youngest daughter, recently moved in with the family to render assistance due to her mother Theresa’s failing sight.
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