Helping the Blind Cross Finish Lines!
Wendy Tan
Hello friends and family, Two weeks ago Tom and I flew to Vancouver Canada along with 5 Visually impaired paddlers from Blind Start of America. We met 2 other blind teams from Canada and Oregon. We broke many personal records for blindstart and came home with a sivler medal As some of you know we have been paddlng for the Blindstart Dragon Boat Team the last 3 years. The team consists of blind, visually impaired and sighted (blindfolded) paddlers to create awareness that you can live an active lifestyle and do great things without an important sense such as sight, which we take for granted. We learned to hone in our listening skills and learn to paddle in sync as a team. With great coaches and practice we were able to medal in most of our races against sighted and young college teams. Our goal is to compete with teams all over the world to qualify to go Adelaide, Australia next year for the world championships (only the best teams in the world will qualify to go there). Yes, this team may have a slight disadvantage (without sight), but they have great ambition and vision within.
I got involved with Blindstart the past few years running marathons, mud runs and dragonboat racing with the visually Impaired and blind athletes and have learned many things about myself and how to guide someone that is blind (especially my own father). Most of you may not know, my father has been blind most of his adult life. His sight started deteriating in his twenties as most of these young people due to a rare eye diseases. My father did not know of resources or did not seek help to learn new skills to cope with losing his sight. With no sight of hope, he became more withdrawn and started isolating himself from the world and his own family. My experience with Blindstart has helped me become closer and understand what my dad went through in the recent years.

Please make a donation to help continue these important programs for the blind and part of the fund will go towards cost of traveling so these athletes get an opportunity to participate in thesse great accomplishments, as well as spreading awareness to the sighted. All donations, how ever big or small is tax deductible.