Molly Burke was 4 and a half years old when she was diagnosed with Retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease that eventually causes blindness. She was 13 years old when she could no longer see colors, and her vision continued to decrease. She started being bullied in school – other students would take her crutches, backpack and dignity, and she grew depressed. Things got difficult enough that in 9th grade she transferred to a school for the blind. Still, she found over time she started being bullied again. In 11th grade she decided to switch back to a sighted school. With the help of a vision itinerant (a teacher trained to help visually impaired) she was able to transition back to school. While Molly made friends at her new school, the bullying never stopped completely.
After Molly finished high school, she discovered an organization called Me to We and joined one of their youth trips to Kenya to build a school. She spoke at a local girls’ school and realized her new goal. Through Me to We she joined their speaker’s bureau and began to share her story about blindness and bullying. Molly is proud to say she has overcome her depression, has come to terms with her blindness, and now lives in her own apartment. Read more about her story.