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September 5, 2013
Star News



A visually impaired woman from Jackson district in Sligoville, St Catherine, is appealing to the public for help as she is unable to take care of her children and her mother, who is suffering from the same illness.

"It's only $60 to pay for my son's lunch, and I cannot afford it. My son doesn't get any help from his father and when him go to school, his friends tease him dat him can't buy lunch, and his mother is blind," the woman told THE STAR.

The 41-year-old woman, Josephine Reid, who lives in a board house, told THE STAR recently that assistance with food and several pieces of furniture would transform her life.

"I am asking for help with food, mattress, clothes, a little television or radio and some zinc for the roof because when di rain fall, I get wet up. I am not asking for anything new, just something that is in good condition," Reid said.

Reid is the mother of five children and two of them live with her. She said their fathers do not help with them. The son who lives with her is 10, and the younger boy is three years old.

Minus the assistance that she gets from the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH), Reid adds that she sometimes survives on water as she is unable to buy food.

"I was born with the glaucoma in one eye and I did go to the school for the blind, that's the Salvation Army School on Mannings Hill Road, in Kingston. It was at that school that I basically lost sight in the other eye because I was hit in the other eye by another schoolmate," Reid said.

The single mother who lives in a two-bedroom house said that she has been going through her hardships for a long time and didn't make it public as she didn't want to be a bother to anyone.

"Sometime I get a little help from my neighbour and so, but I don't like to be a bother to any. A lot of times I go church hungry and I just come and drink water because I have nothing to eat," Reid said.

Reid's mother, 80-year-old Vera Gayle, said that she was not born blind, however, when she was younger a dangerous chemical got into her eyes and she lost her sight because the problem wasn't tend to early enough.

Suzan Campbell, a member of the Keith's Hall Revival Church in the area, has also confirmed with THE STAR that Reid is in need.

Campbell, who attends the same church as Reid, reached out to THE STAR last week beckoning for our news team to seek help for the visually impaired woman.

Anyone who can assist Reid is being asked to call 790-7384 or 932-6282.

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