Binh, 43, of Tan Phu Commune, Tay Ninh Province, said his family was too poor to provide him with treatment. But since his eyes kept getting worse the doctor had to remove them.
He now lives with his wife, three daughters and a son in a small house his father left him.
He did not let his blindness defeat him, and has worked hard for the last 20 years to support his family. People hire him to climb and harvest coconuts during the dry season. Despite his disability, he is able to clamber up a coconut tree quickly.
“Since I was a kid, I have been groping around to help my parents, so I became more proficient with my hands,” he said.
He can use his finger to determine the quality of the coconut. Binh can earn up to VND100,000 ($4.28) a day since he gets paid VND1,000 for each coconut he plucks.
Living along Ho Tin Reservoir, he also learned to catch fish when he was young. So when no one hires him during the rainy season, he goes fishing instead.
“I have to fish near the shore since the water level is high during the rainy season. I throw the net randomly since I cannot see where the fish are. There are times I cannot catch any fish the wholeday.”
With just his hands, he can distinguish between various kinds of fish and detach them from the net.
At the end of September he goes out to the fields to collect cassava. Binh said farm owners let people take whatever is left after the first harvest.
Nguyen Thi Dep (40), his wife, said theirs was an arranged marriage. She did not like him at first due to his disability. But now she is glad she married Binh because he is a hardworking man who wholeheartedly loves his family. Binh said he gets a lot of support from his family and neighbors, who help him go to work and assist him whenever he needs.
“Now I work hard to ensure my children have a better life,” Binh said.