It's barely the end of January and already, 2017 is proving to be a brilliant year. Why? Because I've been partnered with a wonderful yellow labrador called Oscar. Before that, I hadn't left my home on my own since I lost my sight completely eight years ago.
As our children grew up, it was wonderful to see the looks on their little faces as they opened their presents. All the excitement and anticipation that quickly turned into sheer joy and elation. Since I lost my sight eight years ago, I haven't had that same thrill with my grandchildren. While I try not be bitter about life, I do feel a little bit like I've been robbed of that pleasure.
When I was first able to talk to my mother after her surgery, she said, fighting back the tears: "I just couldn't stop thinking about not seeing my children and grandchildren again." For so many people, that painful thought becomes a reality. A reality that in many cases can be easily avoided.
For the International Day of persons with disabilities, I want to share my story on finding work as a severely-sight impaired
I just haven't had the confidence to learn how to use a white cane. I hate the clicking sound it makes as you go, and I don't want to draw that attention to myself. Instead, Elaine has learned how to guide me - partly through the internet, partly trial and error.
I was three years old when British computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee enabled the internet to be accessible to 'non-technical' people with the creation of the World Wide Web. I can't say the invention had much of an impact on me back when I was playing with trains or trying to eat snails. To be honest, as a three-year-old, I was oblivious to most things.
At the moment, if a vision impaired person wants to travel by tube, they have the option of seeking assistance from a member of staff, a service that works well for the most part. However, it is the prospect of being able to get from a to b independently and without need for advanced planning, that is so exciting for these youngsters.
Bianca Von Stempel is a fashion designer motivated towards changing perceptions of visual impairment through her love for fashion design. Raising awareness of sight loss through her creative and dynamic deisgns. Out to prove that sight loss isn't a barrier to achieving your aspirations in life.
A drug commonly used to lower cholesterol could help restore vision in patients suffering from age-related macular degeneration
This autumn, a group of cross-party MPs posed questions to the Department of Health, in an attempt to gather information