Read Tom's story
"My name is Tom, I am 29 and living my best life!
"A bit about my medical history. I am moderately-severely Deaf and I received my first hearing aids at 3 years old. I also have retinitis pigmentosa (RP), an eye condition that affects my low-light vision mostly, but also my vision in bright light too. These two combined form Ushers syndrome type 2. I also have Bi-Polar which can be a challenge at times but I have an amazing family supporting me.
"I attended a mainstream playschool as well as The Elizabeth Foundation. I went onto a mainstream primary and secondary school with support from the school and my parents. College and university were both mainstream with less support but I was always helped by my amazing parents and partner. I secured a degree in outdoor adventure leadership and management.
"Where am I at in life? Well I feel it’s going pretty well. I’m living in the Midlands now with my wife Sophie, and 20-week old golden retriever Honey. We bought our house a few years back.
"I have had lots of jobs from working at cycle stores in sales and the workshop, to working as a PA for a wheelchair user. I have worked as an outdoor activity instructor, I have also worked at Twycross Zoo which was good fun!
"But right now, I am running my own business Wonky Candles with my brother Pj. We make candles that we sell online at www.wonkycandles.co.uk
"I suppose I should share some of the cool stuff I have got up to along the way. These things don’t come without challenges, but anything is possible. As a teenager I played basketball for my school, county, national club and England. I have guided some epic mountain bike rides with clients and friends including a trip up the highest bridleway in England.
"I drive and I love cars, I have spent time co-driving in off-road rallies and have learned to ride a trials motorbike – trust me it’s harder than it looks! I have paddled white water kayaks all over the UK in rivers and the sea, and climbed mountains and technical rock faces all over the UK and Europe. Right now, my focus is track days – I run around 10 days a year myself and attend many more with my dad.
"Why did I tell you all of these things about me? It’s certainly not to boast but because I want people to know what’s possible. Dream big and never forget anything Is possible – especially with a strong support network."
"Dream big and never forget anything Is possible – especially with a strong support network."