sight night Calgary 2017 – Honorary Chair
Hi, my name is Zachary Abdalla but my friends call me Zach. Don’t worry, I’m friends with everyone so you can start out calling me Zach. I’m 10 years old and I’m legally blind.
I have an extremely complicated eye history so I’ll just tell you about the major events. When I was just a baby both my lenses dislocated, this was the first of my 18 eye surgeries. I was diagnosed with Marfan syndrome which can affect the eyes. When I started kindergarten, I was visually impaired and on the list for cornea transplant. After the cornea transplant I got a serious infection in the globe of my left eye and lost all vision in that eye. Luckily, I still had Vision in my other eye!!! In grade 3, I got another serious inflection in my right eye and lost some additional vision, shortly after I recovered from that, I had 4 retinal detachments in the next 4 months. This has left me legally blind. I also have glaucoma as well as other minor eye issues.
I use a white cane to move around but I can still read large print comfortably. For all you kids’ reading this, don’t worry, I can still play video games but I sit pretty close to the big screen tv.
I joined ASRAB about 3 years ago and I’m glad I did. I get to do lots of awesome stuff. Some of my favorites are hip hop dance, rock climbing, pedal boating, swimming, soccer, and archery. I love doing stuff with ASRAB because I get to meet new friends and do fun activities. My mom wants me to say that participating in sports with ASRAB gives me confidence and a sense of community. She says she is glad I get to meet peers that have similar experiences and challenges as well as adults that are excellent role models for me. ASRAB lets me participate in sport in a safe environment and teaches me lifelong skills for staying active but I love it because it is AWESOME & FUN.
I hope you will support Sight Night Calgary 2017 as a runner, walker, volunteer or donor. The money raised will be used to support all the epic programs that ASRAB provides including the competitive programs like goalball as well as the active living programs that I participate in.
I look forward to “seeing” (haha) you at sight night Calgary 2017!!!!!!!!
Alex Smyth on AMI This Week meets 10-year old Zach Abdalla to find out why he was named this year’s honourary chair of Sight Night Calgary and learn more about the event.