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Molly is 22 years old and from Maidenhead Berkshire, England. Molly was born with Usher Syndrome, only deafness was evident until she was12 years old when she began to go blind and became registered blind at just 14 years old and became a guide dog owner at 16 years old. Usher Syndrome is the most common cause of congenital deafblindness and very misunderstood. To date there is no cure.
Molly learnt very early on in her diagnosis that she had to rely on accessible assistive technology in order to be as inclusive as possible. Molly’s chosen mode of communication is oral, but learnt BSL and HOH before being registered blind. Molly began raising awareness of Usher Syndrome when she was just 14 years old, her way of educating those around her of her specific accessibility needs. Initially making videos creatively highlighting exact requirements. These video’s won her the title of Sense’s Young Deafblind Person of the Year in 2010 here in the UK when she was just 16 years old, her video’s continue to be used in Deafblind Awareness training. Molly’s reliance on assistive technology has meant her becoming very knowledgeable of accessibility need and in so doing she regularly voices her opinions via her widely read blog, which can be viewed at http://www.mollywatt.com One particular bloghttp://www.mollywatt.com/blog/entry/my-apple-watch-after-5-days … demonstrated to the world how important accessibility is to those with sensory impairment. This particular blog resulted in her being fitted with ReSound LiNX² hearing aids which have transformed her hearing. Cutting edge technology is truly life changing as a result she advocates this sort of technology and accessibility for all.
Spearheading her own Charity The Molly Watt Trust http://www.molly-watt-trust.org registered in the UK where she and her small team are passionate about raising awareness of Usher Syndrome and its many challenges along with fundraising to help others with small items of enhancing equipment. Molly is also an Ambassador for Sense in the UK. A published author and illustrator of two children’s books, a regular Keynote Speaker at various organisations, schools and events including The Houses of Parliament in London, at Harvard Medical School in Boston, US. Molly’s reliance and interest in technology has made her passionate about all aspects of accessibility for all, particularly those with sensory impairments, the deaf, blind, deafblind, ageing and elderly and as a result she regularly consults on accessibility, usability and inclusive design where she is regularly called upon for her views and opinions.
Now specialising in accessibility, usability and inclusivity Molly regularly consults to those in the world of digital technology in her quest to give input based on life experience in the hope the world will become more inclusive. “I simply want to make a difference, however small.” http://www.molly-watt-trust.org and http://www.mollywatt.com
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