New Challenge

Of the nearly 400 DeafBlind people living in Malawi, 250 are school-aged children, according to a survey by the Visual Hearing Impairment Membership Association and the Malawi Council for the Handicapped. These children are falling behind in education, as schools often lack the resources to provide learning accommodations for DeafBlind students. “There was a lack of assisted devices, fellow students dejected me when I sought help, and also a scarcity of teaching and learning materials,” says Chrissy Matumba, who recently became the first DeafBlind student admitted to Blantyre Secondary School, a prestigious public high school in Blantyre, Malawi. Nineteen-year-old Duster Lucius, who is also DeafBlind, sits down with Matumba and Ernest Sokasoka, head of the inclusive education department at Blantyre Secondary, to discuss challenges facing DeafBlind students in schools.

  • Duster Lucius
  • Jody Santos
    Visionaries public television series, Discovery Channel, Hallmark
  • Duster Lucius
  • Martha Momba
  • Dick Chitimbe
  • Duster Lucius
  • Desmond LaFave
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    4 minutes 3 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    November 1, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    300 USD
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - Disability Justice Project
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Distribution Information
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Director Biography - Duster Lucius

Duster Lucius is a 19-year-old disability youth activist who is DeafBlind (partial hearing, completely blind). Malawian by nationality and Yao by tribe, he is a national youth coordinator at the Visual Hearing Impairment Membership Association (VIHEMA), an organization advocating for the rights and needs of persons who are DeafBlind in Malawi. At VIHEMA, Lucius advocates for the inclusion of youth who are DeafBlind in all the Malawian government's strategic development activities. Aside from his advocacy work, he currently studies at St. Patrick's National Secondary School in Mzedi.

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Director Statement

It is a well-known fact that education is one of the most essential services, as its fruits are tangible. The fruits make one self-reliant and more productive to actively partake in national development activities. In Malawi's case, to achieve the Vision 2063 agenda, there is a need to include the involvement of all groups of people, regardless of their preconceived differences. The system should aim at incorporating students with disabilities. Right now, many students [with disabilities] fail to progress with their education, resulting in high dropout numbers, as a majority of these come from families that live within the arms of extreme poverty.