Beauty Buzz & Blog Biz: Advocacy
World Sight Day
Today is World Sight Day (WSD) an annual day of awareness held on the second Thursday of October, to focus global attention on blindness and vision impairment. This year’s key message focuses on “Hope In Sight.” Did you know that over 1.1 billion people around the world live with vision loss? Check out this cool “Vision Atlas” from The International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness.
Prevention of avoidable sight loss and advocacy efforts related to blindness and low vision are just as critical as confronting the misconceptions and prejudices about the people who live with blindness. From personal experience, I think it’s important to do everything within our power to preserve the gift of sight. Yet at the same time when it comes to the point where medical, surgical, and/or medicinal interventions no longer work learning to survive and thrive with sight loss is essential.
For many people, it can be incredibly difficult to learn how to navigate the world after the loss of sight. The physical, emotional, and psychological impact can take a toll on many of us. When we add in the social stigma and misconceptions about blindness and the abilities of blind people, it makes life even more challenging.
Amplifying Our Voices
There is no shame in having or living with a disability. While our disabilities are a part of us they do not wholly define who we are as people. With over 7.5 billion people in the world, there will be times all of us will practice ‘innocent ignorance’ (a term I borrowed from a friend). Innocent ignorance is a kind way of saying we don’t know what we don’t know. In other words, we can’t, nor should we assume everyone is all-knowing. Many people don’t intentionally set out to hurt others, rather they are innocently ignorant.
Awareness is one way of combatting innocent ignorance. Continually elevating our voices by advocating on behalf of our communities helps to raise the consciousness of society. Advocacy isn’t a solitary venture nor is it for the faint of heart. It’s a 24/7/365 gig that requires a great deal of stamina, patience, and collaboration.
Bold Blind Beauty was created to empower women who are blind or low vision to break barriers, increase their confidence, and claim their power. In the years since the site launched its advocacy has continually evolved to promote awareness and acceptance through AIR (Accessibility, Inclusion, and Representation). The work is not easy but it’s essential as more and more people deal with sight loss issues.
Finding Beauty In Hope
What’s so exciting about advocacy are its many facets—there is no one way to advocate for positive change. So for this year’s WSD, Bold Blind Beauty thought it would be cool to tackle the topic of “beauty” from the perspective of blind and low vision people.
ALL people are beautiful and Bold Blind Beauty wholeheartedly believes that “Real Beauty Transcends Barriers.” So today we are thrilled to takeover @VictoriaLandBeauty’s Instagram Stories. The Bold Blind Beauty community is sharing our thoughts on “What Does Beauty Mean To Me?” with the Instagram community through the kindness of Victorialand Beauty. We will continue to break barriers and help the world to SEE real beauty without judgment.
Appreciating differences and accepting people where they are is at the heart of humanity and this is REAL BEAUTY. Let’s continue to strive for inclusivity in all areas of life. Hopefully, there will come a time when we fully embrace our differences without condescension.
#HopeInSight #WSD2020 #WorldSightDay
Closeup photo of an eye with the word “advocacy” written across the iris.