I’m Holly, I’m 23-years-old and I’m blind. I attended mainstream education, graduated University in 2017, I’m an Assistive Technology Officer and a disability and lifestyle blogger at lifeofablindgirl.com.

By Holly Tuke

I haven’t always been comfortable with my disability, but I have never let it stop me from getting to where I want to be in life. 

Having a disability can be hard, we face many challenges and barriers. As someone who is registered as blind with no useful vision, I’ve faced my fair share of challenges and continue to do so.

But having a disability isn’t always a bad thing, it certainly doesn’t have to be. I live a normal, independent life and don’t let my visual impairment stop me.

There are so many wrongly perceived ideas and negative attitudes surrounding disability, there’s no wonder we often feel pressured and want to exceed those expectations but being disabled isn’t all doom and gloom.

So, am I proud to be disabled?

The answer is yes, but why, I hear you asking.

There are so many reasons, my disability has taught me some unique skills such as learning braille and how to use a long cane, I’m part of the disabled/visual impairment communities and it’s helped shape the person I am today. If it wasn’t for my visual impairment, I wouldn’t have started blogging.

I started my blog in 2015 in the hope to raise awareness of visual impairment and tackle the common misconceptions of disability, but it’s become so much more than that. I’ve been involved in campaigns for organisations such as the RNIB and Scope, most recently I was named in Shaw Trust’s 2018 Disability Power 100 list as one of the most influential disabled people in the UK!

I love blogging, volunteering and raising awareness, I want to help others and make positive changes in society. Being part of the Disability Power 100 list alongside some incredible disabled people made me really think about how far I’ve come and what I’ve achieved, each of us have our own story to share, our own reasons for why we do the work and campaigning we do. It made me reflect on how I view my disability, I would like to think that the positives outweigh the negatives.

I want to help others, I want people to know that they can live the life they want to and know that they are good enough. Having a disability can present you with daily challenges, you may feel like you want to give up, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

I am proud to be disabled and to share my experiences to hopefully help others.

About Holly Tuke

In 2015, Holly started her blog, lifeofablindgirl.com. As the name suggests, it covers Holly’s day-to-day life as well as a variety of topics relating to sight loss and disability, like education, assistive technology, beauty and lifestyle. Needless to say, the blog is fully accessible for assistive technology users. Holly’s particular eye condition is Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP), due to being born prematurely. One of her aims of the blog is to educate people about the spectrum of visual impairment. Holly shares her own experiences and works to tackle common misconceptions and stigmas around sight loss and disability, showing non-disabled audiences that disability shouldn’t limit a person.

Website: www.lifeofablindgirl.com

Youtube: www.youtube.com/channel/UCOuT21MYb1TXioiGKkgX2fw/

Facebook: lifeofablindgirl

Twitter: @lifeofablindgrl

Instagram: @lifeofablindgirl