SIP Fellow Cassandra Chiu Featured On Straits Times
We are proud to announce that our SIP fellow, Cassandra Chiu, had just launched her new book, “Fighting For A Place In This World”, on 9th March 2019. The book was launched last Saturday in tandem with The Finger Players’ inclusive theatre production, “Not In My Lifetime?”. According to its publisher Ethos Books, it is the first book in Singapore to be brought out simultaneously in paperback, e-book, braille and digital braille, which is read on tactile tablets that create raised bumps via a pneumatic system.
Despite suffering from a degenerative genetic condition called Stargardt disease, Cassandra has never let it deter her. She pursued a Master of Science degree in Professional Counselling and is today, a certified psychotherapist, and an author of a newly published book.
As an inspiring fellow and ambassador of SIP’s vision: To build a more inclusive, sustainable and mindful world, Cassandra believes in a “social model”, which empowers people with disabilities to make choices for themselves, over a “charity model” of simply giving.
“I want society to see what we can do, that we’re not totally useless or helpless – we can do things given the right opportunities and tools. But we are also fighting to have a place in this world we share.”
In the book, she discusses how to make society more inclusive, from implementing more road design features such as audible traffic signals to increasing employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
Chiu says: “I hope that at the policy level, there will be more programmes to channel resources into quality rehabilitation for people with disabilities… such that they learn to function well despite the disability and that there will be help for them to be employed at a meaningful level and with appropriate compensation.”
“When we see disabled people as objects of pity, we keep them in this ‘helpless’ box.”
“It’s not about inviting them to the table and paying for their meals. It’s about equity, about having everyone come to the table, share a meal and feed themselves.”
A Place For Us is available in paperback ($19.90) from Books Kinokuniya and Times and in e-book ($14.99) and digital braille ($19.90) from ethosbooks.com.sg. For braille pricing, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Resources and images are adapted from The Straits Times