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International Women’s Day – Celebrating Disabled Women

Disability blogger and campaigner Kerry Thompson, who has Muscular Dystrophy and uses a wheelchair, tells us why it’s so important that we celebrate the achievements of disabled women.

Celebrating the success of women is exciting and powerful, shining a spotlight on the amazing women in the world. I like to think that I celebrate women every day, however, International Women’s Day on 8th March is a nice reminder to keep supporting and celebrating all the fabulous women around us.

I’m surrounded by amazing disabled women in the AccessAble Champions network, including Emma Muldoon, who shows that accessible travel is possible; Fi Anderson, a mother working for a more inclusive world for her family; and Holly Tuke, raising awareness of sight loss. All these women we can take inspiration from and admire. Sharing accessibility stories, inspiring the next generation of disabled females.

Image of Emma Muldoon on her travels

You don’t need to look far to see some incredible high-profile disabled women paving the way, including multiple gold medal winner Dame Sarah Stoney, Actress Liz Carr, gold medallist Kadeena Cox and disability rights activist Penny Pepper.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a wheelchair user, visually impaired, have an invisible impairment or physical impairment, we are very capable of many things which may shock a few people. We are after all as human as everyone else we feel pain, happiness, and love. Yes, we can get married, have sex, have a family, run a business or work for someone else, yes we can drive a car or sail a boat, be an athlete, teacher or doctor, we can be just about anything.

We just have a few things that make us that little bit more fabulously imperfect in an already imperfect world.

My disability doesn’t define me as a woman, and if me sharing my world means I inspire just one woman I’ll be happy as I still love meeting my girlfriends, getting my hair done picking that killer outfit. As does every disabled woman.

International Women’s Day is also a brilliant opportunity for us all to shout even louder about incredible, fierce women in our lives, the women who rise by lifting others and the women who work tirelessly to make our place in the world an equal and more inclusive one.

Solidarity comes in many different forms showing our support and encouragement is so important. We don’t need to bring women down because of their disabilities, shape, gender, background, race or religion. We should be shouting about how fabulous women are showing the love no matter what.

So, on International Women’s Day, be kind to your fellow females. It costs you absolutely nothing and who knows who you might inspire or reassure.

Until next time remember you’re beautiful, you’re powerful, you’re incredible.

Read more from Kerry on her blog

AccessAble Champion