Ayesha and APM Communities transcript

Ayesha: I'm Ayesha. I'm a Community Development Officer at APM Communities. I'm legally blind. I have a condition that has increased blindness throughout my whole life. So it's made getting a job really hard because most people see a disability instead of all the amazing skills that I have.

Jeff: When Ayesha and I first met, she was very witty and was very much a people person. And when we got together to create her plan, she wanted to create goals that would allow her to connect with her community and also link with people because she's very much involved. She loves getting involved in events, she loves pop culture, and she wanted supports to allow her to connect with people to do that and be part of her community.

Sam: I really like working with Ayesha because she's direct and she's honest and she's straight to the point. She doesn't mince words when it comes to inclusion and awareness for people around her, and she is a fantastic representative for people with disability. So previous to APM Communities, Ayesha completed a qualification in events, so that made her perfect for our community development team and she was able to bring those skills to the role and really build on those skills in the role. We all, I suppose, have preconceived opinions of the barriers faced by people with disabilities. And when it came to Ayesha and visual impairment, the learning was just phenomenal.

Ayesha: So I got involved in Project Disco's working group by my support coordinator. And the working group is a group of people with lived experience and also organizations with Mandurah to be able to create a project. In this case, it was EASYBEATZ, and it's an inclusive disco run at a local pub. So it's not at an events hall or anything, it's actually out in the public so people can see people with disabilities and it's created a lot of awareness. Just because you have a disability doesn't mean you can't do anything, you're more than just your disability and sit and actually look at your skills and you might have a lot of other qualities than just your disability. And yeah, the world's a bit scary, but if we're all the same, then the world will be very boring.