Postive about rude

Savita Devi is a quick learner. Picture LUISA QIOLEVU

Savita Devi is a quick learner. Picture LUISA QIOLEVU

BEING visually-impaired does not stop Savita Devi from chasing her dreams.

The 26-year-old woman is doing a diploma in office management at the University of the South Pacific, Labasa campus.

Ms Devi lives with her parents and her brother at their home at Korovuli settlement in Seaqaqa. She is the younger of two siblings and has always dreamt of achieving higher things in life.

She completed her primary education at the Fiji Society for the Blind School in Suva then went on to DAV Girls College in Samabula.

She began her tertiary education at the University of the South Pacific’s Laucala campus in Suva before she moved to USP Labasa campus in 2015.

Ms Devi had to move to the Labasa campus when her mum got sick in 2015.

“I lost my mum in 2016 and now I’m left with my brother and my father,” she said.

Ms Devi said gone were the days when she used to be scared of the way people thought of her.

“I don’t let people’s negativity stop me from living a normal life,” she said.

“I wash all our clothes at home and hang them out on the line, clean the house and wipe the louvres and I can do it well because I learnt to do things on my own at the disabled school.”

Ms Devi helps her father with food preparation at home.

“My dad does the cooking and I just help with the dicing of onion, garlic and all other stuff,” she said.

Ms Devi said to be educated and to have a career had always been her aim.

“Nothing can ever stop me from achieving my dreams, not even my disability,” she said.

“At first I used to think that what people think of me is more important until I realised that those words were just another way to push us forward in life.”

Miss Devi said those words might sound rude but being positive about it had always changed those words in to inspiration.

“I had a normal high school life and made a lot of friends and my high school days were surrounded with good memories and I had lots of friends who were very supportive,” she said.

“Even now at the USP campus here in Labasa, I have a close friend named Shivani Raj who is always there for me.”

Miss Devi uses a special computer in school with screen radar software.

“The computer that I use in school has a jaws abbreviation meaning jobs access with speech,” she said.

“I am familiar with everything on the keyboard and I access my notes from Moodle like every other student and there’s nothing special at all.”

Miss Devi hopes to inspire children around Fiji with her story.

“I don’t like promoting myself but instead I want to share my story so I can help inspire people around Fiji and to challenge them,” she said.

“There is nothing hard in this life, all you have to do is take that first step.”

Her best friend, Ms Raj, said Ms Devi had inspired her to work hard in school.

“She is a great friend of mine, funny to hang out with and even though she’s blind she can sense that I am in the room and she will call out my name,” she said.

“She’s very intelligent and I am blessed to be her friend, she taught me to be independent.”

Her father, Latchmi Prasad, said Sarita was always an independent child when she was young.

“She prefers to do things by herself and she is a quick learner, she knows the set p inside our house and she walks freely without having to worry about where she was going,” he said.