Since an early age I have been used to living and traveling by myself. The fact that I am blind certainly challenged me to develop independence and a love of freedom. My family and school environment always encouraged me to push my limits and take life in my own hands.
On one of my journeys to Southern Italy I met blind people telling me that it was not possible for me to go out alone because I am blind. Of course I did not listen to them, but at the same time I was very upset of how such a limiting attitude can be internalized by blind people themselves. If I can be independent, why should it be different for them? This moment I felt the wish to challenge those limiting attitudes both in blind people and the society, but I did not know what to do.
The next time I came across blindness perceived as limitation was in Brazil. I noticed that many blind people find it very difficult to take initiative to improve their situation. Lack of opportunities and resources often lead to a passive life without perspectives for the future.
During a one year stay in Fortaleza, Brazil, I developed the dream to work with blind people in this region to remove the limiting attitudes attached to blindness. However, I went back to Germany to complete teachers training and only after a training programme at
Kanthari – International Institute for Social Entrepreneurs and Innovators
I had the experience, skills and courage to realize my dream and start a project in Northeastern Brazil.