Paralympian Libby Clegg on realising her dream – words Alan Woods
I can’t imagine what it would be like to be blind or partially sighted. It would transform your life obviously but it’s how you respond to that challenge that would mark you out as a person.
People with sight loss still have dreams and ambitions and don’t just define themselves by their condition.
To help give us an understanding into just what the world around can sound and feel like to blind and partially sighted people a new short film has been produced. It asks you to put on headphones to help you immerse yourself into the experience. We then get to hear and feel a soundscape of words and noises that give the listener an impression of what’s it is like to have a burning ambition and to have to battle against the odds and their own condition to achieve that dream.
The charity Guide Dogs have teamed up with award-winning agency Don’t Panic and Paralympian Libby Clegg to create the inspiring short film that rather than shout the message it enables us to empathise more by getting at least a flavour of the barriers that blind and partially sighted people have to break down in order to achieve.
So we get to hear the people around Libby who encouraged and supported her in her ambition but also the other side – the school bullies, the discouraging teachers and constant naysayers. Towards the end of the film we get to hear and see Libby as she stormed the 2014 Commonwealth Games where she won the 100 metre race, we also get to see her with guide dog Hattie who has helped her both in everyday life and in realising her dream.
“Having my guide dog Hattie gives me the confidence to train and compete, and live my life how I want. The film mimics some of the experiences I had as a child through to adulthood and I hope it gives those without sight loss an insight into mine and other blind or partially sighted people’s lives and the obstacles we face.”
For more information visit www.guidedogs.org.uk