• Română
  • English
Zoom in Regular Zoom out

Even if what you want to do is difficult, it doesn’t mean it’s impossible!

Iulian is 22 years old, wears glasses and sometimes uses a hearing aid because his hearing is at approximately 50%.

He finished high school in Focșani, and for the past two years, he has been working at a plastics factory. Initially, he packed orders, but progressed in time. Now, he is learning everything about the production machines in order to take over the responsibilities of his colleague, an engineer who is about to retire. He is proud of his journey, as this is his first job.

When he was in the twelfth grade, he first met the Sense International Romania team during a trip to Brașov. That's when he learned about Hellen Keller, a famous person with deafblindness. He was curious to find out more and searched her name on Google.

"When I learned that she couldn't see or hear at all and still managed so well, I became interested in learning more about these special people", Iulian recalls.

In the following SIR workshops, he also learned the stories of other individuals with deafblindness who have succeeded in life, which made him trust more his own abilities.

"When I was younger, I didn't have much confidence in myself. Even now, I still struggle with that sometimes. But when I found out about people who excel in all situations, I gained more confidence. It was a good experience. I believe that if I hadn't had contact with such people, I would have remained unconfident", says the young man.

The group of young people with deafblindness

When he started attending the activities organized by SIR, he felt a sense of belonging to a group of extraordinary people, and that made him happy. Since 2020, he has been a member of the SIR group of young people with deafblindness.

"When you belong to a group, you can discuss topics you have in common, you can reach out to someone when you need to, and that increases understanding", adds Iulian.

He also enjoyed the discussions about the rights of people with disabilities and learned many things that help him when he travels.

"We found out about our rights, about how society can support us in various situations, that you can find support anywhere, even if sometimes you feel like you're alone on this journey. It helps to have greater pride in yourself", the young man recounts.

He believes that the work of the foundation is important because it brings people together.

"We come together as part of society; it helps us understand certain things, how society works and how to cope with things. It's important because many people don't know that there are things which can help them. You don’t hear these things anywhere else, maybe you haven’t thought about them”, he further explains.

"If I can help with something, I want to help”

Iulian is a good friend, always ready with advice or a helping hand for anyone in need. He has always enjoyed helping others, and now he has more confidence that he can handle any situation that may arise.

"If I can help with something, I want to help. Even with a question, accompanying someone at the bank or hospital. For example, I went with someone to the hospital to ask about a person there. The person I went with could hear, but he was embarrassed to speak because he thought he couldn't speak very clearly, so I accompanied him”, adds Iulian.

He feels that he has a greater understanding and empathy, similar to people who have gone through more difficult experiences. When both your senses, sight and hearing, are affected, you have different needs, says the young man, but even so, he believes he can do everything that anyone can do.

"Even if what you want to do is difficult, it doesn't mean it's impossible! The fact that it is difficult gives you greater satisfaction in the end."

He felt satisfaction when he first got on skis, also during an SIR activity. At first, he thought it might be similar to ice skating or rollerblading, but he quickly realized it was not the case.

"On skis, you're stuck, you can't move at all, and it gives you a sense of lack of control, that you won't be able to control your legs. But I did well because I tried to move forward, even though there was a whole battle going on inside me", says Iulian.

For the future, he wants to start a family, continue helping others, and take care of himself. He wants to balance leisure time with work and hopes to start drawing again one day, as this is one of childhood passions. He wants to continue attending activities with the group of young people with deafblindness, and feel that he is part of a community.

Iulian la Predeal

Story written by Cristina Botezatu

Other similar stories: