A blind woman identified as Smangele Dhladhla has said she doesn’t need eyes to take care of her beautiful baby girl. Living in Diepkloof, Soweto, South Africa, Smangele has a one-year-old baby girl named Katekani, which means blessing.
She says the first time she visited the clinic for a pregnancy test, the doctors asked her whether she was raped.
“I’m blind but I’m not stupid. I need hands, ears and a nose to do my work as a mother,” said Smangele.
Smangele also reveals she has a partner, who is also blind like her.
“I am human too. I have feelings and I have a boyfriend. He is also blind.”
Surprisingly, she is a goalball player for the Western Gauteng team in Roodepoort and is the captain of her team. Goalball is an exclusive game played by blind or visually impaired athletes while wearing opaque eyeshades at all times.
Each team has three players and they throw a ball with bells embedded in it into the opponent’s goal. The ball is thrown by hand and never kicked. Each team is allowed to have between one to three substitutes on the bench.
“At first I didn’t take it seriously but then I went for trials where they were looking for players to represent South Africa at the Paraplegic Games. I wasn’t selected but coach Phillip Williams noticed my playing skills. Now I’m the captain of the team and I play centre,” she said.