Sacha needs a Guide Dog just like her Mum
Guide Dogs has been working with Sacha since she was three years old. Sacha has touched the hearts of many of our staff.
Like her Mum, and long-term client of Guide Dogs, Alison, Sacha is legally blind.
Sacha’s Mum, Alison, was born with a vision impairment but she didn’t receive a diagnosis until she was in her thirties, after Sacha was born.
Can you imagine growing up not knowing what caused your vision loss? Then later finding out your precious six-month old daughter has the same mysterious condition?
A few years later, Sacha’s Ophthalmologist attended a conference in the United Kingdom where they were discussing a rare eye condition. On Sacha’s next visit to the Ophthalmologist, both Sacha and Alison received their final diagnosis.
Sacha and Alison were diagnosed with Familial Exudative Vitreoretinopathy (FEVR). FEVR is a common condition; however, most people do not realise they have it because it does not affect their vision. In rare cases, like Sacha and Alison, it comes with manifestations that affect vision, such as Retinal Folds and Nystagmus.
Sacha wants to be independent
A determined little girl, Sacha learnt to use a white cane when she was just four years old, with the support of Guide Dogs.
Sacha continued to receive specialist services from Guide Dogs over the years, but to her, the most important was Orientation and Mobility training. She wanted to be independent, just like her Mum.
“Even when I was little I wanted to do things on my own. With the help of Guide Dogs, I learnt to use a white cane when I was four, then when I was older I learnt to travel independently using public transport,” Sacha explains.
Alison has had four beloved Guide Dogs
Like Sacha, Alison has received multiple services from Guide Dogs over the years. Alison was a client of Guide Dogs when she was pregnant with Sacha. "Logan has been with me since May 2015. He is my fourth Guide Dog. I had my first dog Bridget when Sacha was born so she has never known life without one," Alison says.
Alison hopes to see Sacha enjoy the same safety, independence, and companionship that she enjoys with her Guide Dog, Logan.
"What Logan provides for me, and what I believe a Guide Dog will provide for Sacha, is a better quality of life, through enhanced mobility, comfort and security," Alison explains.
Once Sacha is matched with her perfect Guide Dog there will be no stopping her.
A Guide Dog will support Sacha at University
Like most 19-year-olds, Sacha is beginning the next stage of her life. She has finished school and has started a double degree in Media and Computer Science.
Right now, Sacha has to face many new challenges, such as walking down a street she is not familiar with or finding a lecture theatre safely at University.
A Guide Dog will give Sacha the ability to face these challenges with confidence, “A Guide Dog will give me the confidence to take on life’s challenges and spend more time in the community doing what I want to do,” Sacha explains.
A Guide Dog will open up many opportunities for Sacha.