Contribution of life skills education to young persons with visual impairment in Thika Municipality, Kiambu County, Kenya.
Ngigi, Pascaline Wangui
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The research intended to investigate the contribution of life skills education to young persons with visual impairment. The objectives of the study were to determine the skills that support the young persons with VI in their daily living acivities, to establish the opinions of young persons with VI and their parents/guardians towards life skills education taught in schools and to establish the benefits of life skills education to independent living of young persons with VI. The study was conducted in Thika Municipality, Kiambu County in Central Province. Thika Municipality consists of Thika town, estates and Kiandutu slums. The descriptive survey design that employed both qualitative and quantitative approaches was used. The target population was selected from Thika town and Kiandutu slums. The population sample were mainly young persons with visual impairment who finished primary school, not more than five years then and their parents/guardians. A purposive sampling procedure was applied. Data was collected through questionnaires, interviews and observation schedules. To ascertain validity and reliability of the instruments piloting was conducted at Thika School for the Blind in Thika town. Quantitative data analysis required the use of Statistical Packages for Social Sciences (SPSS) while qualitative data was coded, quantified, categorized and thematically analyzed. In the study, findings revealed that life skills education promoted individual independence and helped young persons with VI develop and grow into well behaved adults equipped with psycho-social competencies. Based on the findings, the study recommended that the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) should modify the curriculum for life skills education to provide learners with VI with relevant skills to foster independence and self-reliance. The Ministry of Education should facilitate workshops, seminars and in-service training to sensitize teachers on contribution of life skills education towards independent living for persons with VI.