2021 President’s Message: Sherry Belka

2021 President’s message:

Full inclusion of people who are blind or visually impaired is not a matter of charity but of civil rights. As an organization which advocates for the rights of blind individuals, our goal is to meaningfully contribute to the conversation which brings about inclusion for people of all abilities. What we seek as blind individuals is no different than that of any other person, employment, dignity, consideration, respect, and equal access. Yet too often, we must overcome barriers before receiving those things to which we as humans have an inherent right. Through our message that nothing less than full inclusion is acceptable, we as blind individuals and as an organization of persons who are blind can shape how society views and treats people who are blind. It is the change in the fundamental way in which society defines what is “normal” and what it means to be “impaired” That we as an organization and as blind individuals can affect the most. It is the change in this fundamental way of thinking that will bring about true inclusion. After all, a community that includes all citizens, regardless of ability, is a thriving and prosperous community!

“Faith is the strength by which a shattered world shall emerge into the light.” Helen Keller