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  1. Boxing While Blind

    I’m a fitness coach based in New York City – my specialties are strength training, boxing, and Muay Thai. A yoga instructor introduced me to my first two visually impaired students. Teaching blind students to box, at least for my own personal teaching style, isn’t too different. In some respects, it can be easier teaching someone who is a clean slate and doesn’t have as many preconceived notions. My teaching method involves a lot of verbal cues. I often teach groups of 12 or more, many of whom are first-time…

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  2. Sharing Information with My Listeners

    I’ve been a volunteer for WXXI Reachout Radio, a radio reading service in Rochester, New York, for over 30 years. Yes, thirty years! For the past few years, I’ve hosted a show of my own called “Enabled,” a weekly program designed to take a deep look into services, products and issues affecting people with vision loss. We’ve covered topics ranging from adaptive technology and audio descriptions to art history and election rights. In doing my research for this program, I have learned so much, which I have happily shared with the…

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  3. Why We Read, and How We Write

    Twenty years ago this month, our global imaginative landscape was enriched when the first book of the Harry Potter series was published – and those of us so inclined found a new world to escape to. As an avid reader and a passionate writer, I’ve enjoyed sharing my enthusiasm for it with readers of all ages and backgrounds. I’ve been part of online forums about the Harry Potter universe, and I recently published my second novel, Before the Tide, which is a work of fan fiction, telling the story of…

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  4. Organization and Lighting Tips to Ensure the Safety of a Person with a Visual Impairment

    My sister-in-law, who has lived with visual impairment for many years, recently came to live with my husband and me – and while we were incredibly happy to have her, we knew we were going to have to make some significant changes around the house to make it more accessible. Knowing that many people likely face similar circumstances, I thought it would be a great idea to share some tips with the BlindNewWorld audience. If you’re tasked with preparing your home for a person with a visual impairment, you may…

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  5. An Early Arrival

    It is amazing when you hear a miraculous story over and over again how ordinary it becomes. It is like a song that is played repetitively on the radio – you can’t wait to hear it, but then it is requested constantly so it doesn’t seem quite as special anymore. I cannot count the number of times I have heard about my birth. It was told to me so many times that I almost believe I was there to experience the whole thing as an observer! I was born premature,…

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  6. Inclusion

    I’m a mother to my 17-year-old daughter. She lost her sight 3 ½ years ago to a brain tumor. I have watched her work hard to gain the physical skills necessary to function independently in a sighted world. I have watched her learn and practice the reading and technological skills necessary to participate in school and future professions. The hardest thing to watch is her social struggles. She can do her part, but it requires another willing participant to have a conversion, let alone a relationship. I saw BlindNewWorld and…

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  7. Unseen Obstacles Ahead, but Tapping Out a Positive Future

    Here is a cocktail napkin version of my story. I had excellent vision until the age of 34, never wore glasses. My world started getting darker, and moving objects suddenly disappeared from sight – not good when driving. My initial academic goal was to get a Bachelors in Information Technology (IT). Life hands you a lemon, make some lemonade. I changed my major to Psychology. The brain and the mind for me were analogous to computers and software, just a little more complex. Earned my B.A. in Psychology with a…

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  8. Being a Kid is Dangerous…

    I just read that blindness is the third most feared physical condition after only cancer and AIDS. I’m blind, but I’m not scared. Most blind kids aren’t scared. I’m sure that number would be completely different if you only surveyed those with blindness. However, fear is a pretty powerful thing. And feeling the fear of others – parents, relatives, teachers, and friends – can be very limiting for a blind kid. I had a conversation last year with a well-respected leader in the blind community. He is in his 70s…

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  9. Mission: Live Life Fully, Make a Difference, and Redefine Possible

    With an amazing team of individuals, I am setting off as a blind cancer survivor the day after I graduate from college on May 22nd to climb the highest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro. In the process, my team is working on raising $500,000 for charities and organizations that not only saved my life, but gave me the strength and the tools to start living again. I realize that the amount of support I had greatly contributed to my success, and I want to make sure children facing life threatening…

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  10. Changing the World, One Person at a Time

    I was 17 years old when I was told that the life I had planned for myself was simply not possible. I was sitting in an ophthalmology exam room after hours of testing, waiting to get answers. I was very aware that my vision was not normal. I had been wearing glasses since I was in first grade, and every year when I visited the optometrist, they told me I needed a stronger prescription. I had told numerous people, both in school and at home that I could not see…

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