I haven’t posted in a while from being so busy!
So, to update you with my recent achievements… I’ve recently organised my own fundraiser! (I had been planning it for 7 months and that 7 months flew by way too quickly!!) My aim was to raise money for Guide Dogs UK and also raise awareness for invisible illnesses to!
CLICK HERE if you would like to donate to Guide dogs through my Just Giving Page!
For those who don’t know, I’m registered severely sight impaired/ blind and suffer with a condition called Rod Cone Dystrophy otherwise known as Retinitus Pigmentosa (which I haven’t been diagnosed with yet). The reason why I picked Guide dogs as the charity to raise money for is because I’m planning to apply for a guide dog in the near future!
We started off the evening with an acoustic set from Cameron Morrell and Jack Reevy. Cameron happens to have a Guide Dog and is actually completely blind from birth due to a condition called ‘Lebers Amaurosis’. After his set, I had an interview with him to show everyone how beneficial a Guide Dog can be to someone who is visually impaired, and how important it is to donate to Guide Dogs. Cameron and I also talked about his condition and the daily struggles of being blind.
CLICK HERE to watch the full interview!
Afterwards, we actually had Jenny speak about her festival, ‘Disability Pride Brighton’, which will be taking place on New Road on 9.7.17. This is the first festival in the whole country which highlights disabled performers and is a celebration for people with all sorts of disabilities. I think this festival is such an amazing idea because It’s not only raising awareness for invisible illnesses and disabilities, but it’s also a huge step forward in making a change to diminish the stigma surrounding the taboo subjects of invisible illnesses and disabilities.
CLICK HERE to view the event link, and please come along and support! My band and I will also be performing to!
We then had NO:VA take the stage and smash it (not literally), with their heavy vibes.
A female-fronted easy core band that blends metalcore riffs and shred guitar with powerful vocals and catchy upbeat chorus’ to create a unique sound.
CLICK HERE for NO:VA’s Facebook page.
Straight after, I presented my first motivational speech. Trust me, it took months and months of practise to remember the speech and to mentally prepare myself to get up on stage and talk about my invisible illnesses, but I’m glad that I’m pushing my self forward into raising awareness for invisible illnesses, as every change matters!
CLIICK HERE to watch my motivational speech, which is called ‘Light after dark’.
Followed by my speech, my best friend Liberty Carpenter went up on the stage and read out her poem that she had written from my perspective of walking in the dark with my night blindness. Just before you click that link, I think you NEED to know that this girl has supported me through the darkest of times, despite my conditions being hard to deal with , she has never made me feel isolated or unwanted, and we definitely need more people like this beautiful human being in the world!!
CLICK HERE to watch and listen to her powerful speech ‘Scared of the darkness’.
Next up, we had the talented Indie Pop band ‘Maughn’. (Check them out because they’re fab!)
CLICK HERE for their Facebook page
To really make this night a visually impaired themed night, I made sure that all bands that performed included a visually impaired member! SPOT THE BLIND..oh wait you cant…BECAUSE IT’S AN INVISIBLE ILLNESS…. Just pointing that out in case you say to a blind person that they don’t LOOK blind!! Same goes for any other invisible illness… MIND BLOWN
The last band that played was my band HAVA!
Trip Hop Rock band, experimental bluesy vocals, and an unusual and not so mainstream sound. (Think.. a mixture of Kate Bush, and Portishead…)!!
CLICK HERE for our Facebook page
To finish off the night, I said my thank you’s to every one who had helped me, (and I got a bit emotional when doing so, especially when I was thanking my student support tutor Ciaran for helping me through hell last year!). Happy tears, happy tears… OH, and there was the raffle of course!! I’d collected a load of prizes and a lot of them were donated by my auntie WHO WAS WEARING A TEDDY BEAR COSTUME BY THE WAY! (she donated 3 teddy bears, flowers, and a bubble wand!). Other prizes that were donated were chocolates and champagne from Co op. A £25 gift card was donated by Arcadia, a £10 gift card was donated by Waitrose, and club night tickets were donated by Patterns AND MORE! There was also CUPCAKES AND MUFFINS for sale!! (big shoutout to my dad for getting them!
Now that I’ve taken you through a little sneak peak of my event, I hope that you are inspired and can take a step forward in raising awareness for invisible illnesses like I’m doing. Thank you to every one who helped me on the night! Special thanks to Becca for being on cupcake duty, George for selling the raffle tickets, my cousin Yasmin for putting up with my stress before hand and telling me to calm the fu*k down!! Thank you to Andy for the photos and videos and thank you to Romarni for being my social media manager for the night and taking photos and videos!
The event was so successful and it was honestly such a blur but I learnt a lot in the process of organising this fundraiser and I will never forget it!
REMEMBER… There is always light after dark and NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE!