Blind Foundation client Hazem Abd Elkader was born with albinism and is passionate about raising awareness for it.
Hazem wanted to share the story of people with albinism so he dedicated this to his thesis. Hazem completed his Master of Arts in Social Sciences with his thesis ‘People with albinism in New Zealand’ in 2015.
The study looks at finding the needs of people with albinism in NZ and assessing how well these are being met. His study showed that people with albinism in New Zealand face socio economic challenges.
“It is a rare condition that is often misunderstood, we look different and we get treated differently. Albinos face challenges with things such as employment, education and transport as a result of the condition” says Hazem.
“The issue is the attitude towards albinism. Raising awareness is important to help mitigate that. That is why it’s so important to me.”
Born in Egypt, Hazem was familiar with these challenges which were amplified because he couldn’t speak English. But he says he chose to believe in himself and his advice to others with albinism is to face the condition.
“I chose to be independent and believed that I could make a better life for myself. I wanted to be a professional, be able to support myself, have a family and job.
“I was lucky enough to receive support for my thesis from the Blind Foundation and Albinism Trust. A lot of people have helped me on my journey and have contributed to what I have achieved today.”
Hazem has plans to develop on his studies and has plans to start a PhD on people with albinism in early 2017.