By Rimsha Ali Shah
“For the first five years after my accident, I was bedridden and oblivious; there was no guidance available for a person like me with such a severe disability because of my spinal cord injury.”
Fast forward to the present. An independent and self-assured Maria Qureshi was now mentoring a group of 30 women on how to improve their lives on their own. Her personal struggle is what prompted Qureshi, an alumna of the International Visitors Leadership Program on Disability Exchange, to design and execute a specialized training workshop for women with spinal cord injuries.
Recalling how she overcame the obstacles she faced by sheer willpower and motivation stemming from meeting like-minded people, she said:
“There are some things you only learn through life experiences. Through this project my purpose is to give hope to the women present here that life has not ended for any one of us. This disability is not a hurdle – it is an opportunity.”