Fernando, a male in his 50’s based in the UK has been registered deaf for most of his life, and from two years ago been registered totally blind. Fernando also suffers with problems in his legs meaning he also doesn’t walk straight. 

From an early age, Fernando was happy and enjoyed being involved with all of the activities he and his siblings used to do, like football and cricket. Although he had his limitations, he was always involved and loved being active. 

His communication with his family took a turn for the worse when his eyesight deteriorated. Before, he was able to mime and sign with his family however, now it is extremely difficult for him. This is where Sense came in. 

Going to a Sense centre allowed Fernando to talk to people in his own way, to further explore himself in conversation, and to have open discussions with other like minded people. It gave Fernando joy and made him happy to know that he could make regular visits to the centre. The team also joined Fernando when he had doctor’s appointments, which allowed Fernando to understand what he was going through. 

Then the pandemic hit, leaving him confused and lonely. After being able to go out every day, he was confined to his house, where he became angry and frustrated. Luckily, Sense were able to help Fernando and visit him to explain the situation to him. After this, he continued to meet regularly with Emily from Sense via zoom. This really helped Fernando feel less isolated, and allowed him to speak to someone who understood him. Sense helped give Fernando peace of mind, and something to look forward to. 

Sense is a charity for the deaf and blind. Created to ‘help people develop the skills to enjoy everyday things like having a conversation, enjoying friendships and living independently’. 

‘We believe that no one, no matter how complex their disabilities, should be isolated, left out, or unable to fulfil their potential’ 

They offer support to families, including advice, events and short breaks, as well as campaigning for the rights of people with complex disabilities. 

Find out more about Sense here.

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About Author

James is a dancer and performer based in London. He is always learning more about how he can expand his artistry in different ways.

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