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Posted On: 5th Apr 2017

Blind Faith

Natasha Mead wants more young people with disabilities to get involved in sport
Natasha is practising running with a guide runner
Coach Sonya Ellis supports Natasha's campaign

'I’m totally blind in my left eye and my vision is deteriorating in my right eye. Eventually I will lose my sight.

 

'I’m determined to carry on running. I want to show the world that if you have a disability you shouldn’t let it stop you from playing sport.' 


Natasha Mead is visually impaired but has refused to let her disability hold her back and regularly runs at her local athletics track. 

 

The 22-year-old, from Plymouth, has teamed up with Fixers to inspire other people to get into sport regardless of the challenges they face. 

 

The charity arranged for her to tell her story on ITV News West Country.

 

She says: 'I was born at 24 weeks weighing just 1 lb 6 - the weight of half a bag of sugar - and the hospital told my parents I may not survive.

 

'I started off running in local competitions around Plymouth and Exeter and then I went up and down the country and eventually out to Belgium and Colorado Springs in America.

 

'At the moment I’m practising with a guide in training sessions because as my sight gets worse I will eventually be running with a guide runner.

 

'To get more young disabled people into sport I feel it needs to be promoted more in local athletic clubs or activity centres.

 

'I want to show the world that if you have a disability then you shouldn't let it stop you from doing sport.' 

 

 

Sonya Ellis coaches at South West Athletics Academy, where Natasha trains. 

 

She says: 'I really hope that this project will encourage disabled individuals who maybe aren't aware of what opportunities there are out there, to come and take part in athletics and other sports that are available. 

 

'A lot of people with disabilities don’t think they can do sport, while actually they can do quite a lot of different activities. We can always adapt and offer different activities for children and adults to take part in.' 

 

Natasha adds: 'I would like to think that younger athletes with disabilities would look up to me as an inspiration. I want to encourage them to keep fit and healthy and forget about their disability.' 

 

To find other resources on this topic, and watch Fixers films, click on the image below.

 

Author: Molly Kersey

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Fixers is a project of the Public Service Broadcasting Trust, funded by the National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund, and featured on ITV.

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