31 December 2014

Most Innovative Awareness Campaign of the Year 2015

Ceylon Today: Awareness-creation on vision impairment of the elderly

Long years ago, a Native American leader said, ‘you can dig as deep as you want but there’s one thing you will never find on the lands we’ve lived on: a home for the elderly.’ 

There was a time when the elderly were not considered liabilities.  They were seen as repositories of knowledge, libraries in fact.  Even today, there are people in this country who will not equate ‘infirm’ with ‘inability’.  And yet, we’ve come to a stage where we have had to mark a special day to talk about the elderly, their difficulties and what kind of action needs to be taken to make their lives easier to live.  are all kinds of ailments that afflict the human being.  Naturally, the older one gets the more vulnerable one is to disease and accident.  Old people can’t get about as easily or as quickly as young people do.  This is why many elderly persons take up reading or at least spend more time reading than they used to when they were younger. 

And yet, in the rush to get in as much reading material as possible on a page in a newspaper, editors pick smaller font sizes.  It’s almost as though they have counted out people with poor eyesight as potential readers.  Worse, maybe it doesn’t even cross their minds that such a category of readers live in our midst.   

It is in this context that ‘The Nation’ celebrates the decision by Ceylon Today to use a font 70% larger than usual on one particular day in order to highlight the problems of those with poor eyesight and especially the elderly. 

Ceylon Today has recognized the elderly and has alerted the young to the inevitable fact of old age and vision impairment that awaits them.  We recognize and applaud in turn.