Soft skills (Individual & social)
The 26th June 2010 session topic was Soft skills (Individual & social), and it was conducted by Mr. K. Ramkrishna, Acting Honorary Secretary-general, The National Association for the Blind, India.
It was a very informative session for both the visually impaired individuals as well as the sighted, where Mr. Ramkrishna spoke of the importance of the development of personal & social skills for an individual.
He started off by focusing on personal skills, where he highlighted on the importance of enhancing language skills, learning Braille, being self dependent but not stretching it too far, brushing up on personal etiquettes, maintaining personal hygiene, learn cooking, helping out with household chores, etc. He also stressed upon how important a role the family members especially the parent’s play in instilling these skills in their visually impaired children.
Then he went onto the social skills, where he spoke of the importance of having the right dress code whether at a party, social gathering, temple, or official meeting. He also spoke of the proper ways of eating and adapting the right table manners, For example, when at a party eat only stuff which one would be comfortable eating with a spoon, or ask for roti’s instead, ask for ice-cream in a bowl instead of a plate, not create a mess & avoid making sounds while eating, etc. He said one should enhance his / her listening skills and maintain the concentration on the topic being discussed and not let the mind wander away. While opening a conversation with strangers, Mr. Ramkrishna says that one should avoid speaking on 3 topics, politics, sex, and religion, as these are very sensitive issues. He also stated that one should maintain the right body posture. One should not slouch while sitting or standing and always try to look at the person speaking when in the middle of a conversation.
After the speech, a very important announcement was made by Lavina, where she appealed to all the parents and family members to come together to form a counseling committee. This committee will help in counseling other parents / family members, and students in matters of career, personal life, etc. We have already got a total of 5 volunteers who have agreed to help us out.
We thank Mr. Ramkrishna for taking out time of his busy schedule and offering these very important tips to all of us with regards to how one should carry him/herself when out in public.