Nadia Clarke

A college student and disability activist

Hello, I am 20 years old and I live in the United Kingdom with my large and often quite manic family. I am Deaf but still manage to hear my sisters arguing. I am also disabled, and therefore use an electric wheelchair to get around independently and an electric communication aid to talk.

I am fun, enthusiastic and have a great sense of humour. I see things in a positive way to overcome any challenges. Similar to many people of my age, I have many interests and hobbies such as watching films-especially the ones with Zac Efron. I also love listening to music, and going to festivals in the summer with friends and family. The sunshine puts a huge smile on my face, and holidays abroad are the best. Finally, I love to read - recently I have been reading ‘Ghost Boy’ by Martin Pistorius, an inspirational and interesting story.

I thrive off socialising, spending much of my time at the cinema, going out for meals or visiting the pub with friends. Socialising and communicating with people is so important and this is why I am so interested in helping others. In the future I aim to Promote Leadership amongst disabled people especially those with communication impairments.

World news is definitely something that intrigues me, spending time on the BBC news website and watching the news on the television. The news also allows me to learn more about the Government and I can keep up to date with whether things are changing in terms of disability rights- the status of disability within society and any changes in policy.

I have been through mainstream school (I was featured on a TV documentary when I was 5 called For the Love of Nadia) and now I am at college studying Health and Social Care Level 2. This will help me in my future as I would like to study Disability Studies and Inclusion at University. I also study English because British Sign Language (BSL) is my first language.

I have done lots of adventurous and interesting work experience over the years. In June 2012 I did a 2 day work experience at the Houses of Parliament with the Shadow Minister of Education Sharon Hodgson MP and the Minister of Children and Families Sarah Teather MP. It was an incredible experience especially having a lager on the Terrace overlooking the River Thames with Sharon in the evening! I am going to write about it all and hope to get some articles published in magazines.

In July, I will be going to America after winning a bursary from Winston Churchill Memorial Foundation. Their motto is ‘To Make a Difference’. I will be acting as an ambassador for the Trust, for Sir Winston Churchill and the United Kingdom. For more information with regards to WCMF visit Whilst I am there I will be researching Leadership and Alternative Communication (AAC). The areas I will be visiting are New York, Pittsburgh and New Orleans, where I will be researching, using questionnaires and filming interviews with other communication aid users. My aim is to be an Advocate and also help change policy and people’s attitudes around Disability to reduce barriers.

Also see