The new Abigail Mlotchwa Dayhouse for Disabled Students was officially opened in the Steve Biko Students' Union Building on 24 May.
The dayhouse is equipped with computers, a kitchen and a lounge area, and special provisions made for disabled students include a bedroom for those with back or head injuries. The facility is completely wheelchair-accessible, and all chairs are higher than usual for easier transfer between chair and wheelchair. The kitchen is equipped with two microwaves, one with a touch pad, the other with dials and buttons.
"Touch pads are fine for people with upper-limb paralysis, but usealess for blind people, who need the dials and buttons to feel their way," explains Reinette Popplestone, manager of Disability Service.
"The dayhouse serves as a base for disabled students, where they can relax and interact," says Popplestone. "Essentially it's a safe chill-out space."
The dayhouse is named in memory of Abigail Mlotchwa, a disabled undergraduate humanities student who died suddenly from a brain hemorrhage over the Easter weekend. Mlotchwa was a student activist who lobbied for the formation of the dayhouse on campus.
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