Life is worthwhile because of diversity. others of us are born small, others tall, and some have disabilities. We can better comprehend ourselves and others by recognising more variation among people. In order to offer her daughter, who was born deaf, a buddy who shared this unique characteristic with her, Clare Tawell, a creative English mother, decided to create dolls with internal hearing aids similar to those used by her daughter.
Clare, the brainchild behind BrightEars, a brilliant project that provides toys and accessories made for kids with hearing, visual, and other difficulties, was the subject of a Now I’ve Seen Everything interview.
Clare started looking for a doll or toy to represent her daughter.
Tilly-like dolls were never available in stores or manufactured. Clare found this quite upsetting because not making toys for kids with disabilities meant essentially neglecting them.
She explained to us that because she didn’t fit the definition of «normal,» it seemed pointless to acknowledge her.
Clare was unable to just wait for someone else to enter the market with the toy she and her daughter, 4, required. She created her very first doll in this manner. «The edges were a touch frayed! But Tilly and this tiny doll both wore the same hearing aids. Tilly was completely in love with it when she first saw it, she recalled.
For their kids, more people requested dolls.
Moms of other young children asked her if she could manufacture one for them soon after her first doll was released. Clare, a radiation technologist by profession, agreed and started modifying dolls in her free time to sell to those families that shared her sentiments.
She and Tilly decorate her hearing aids with prints of unicorns or dinosaurs, hence the name of her internet store, «BrightEars.» Her equipment is specifically made to be eye-catching and colourful. I don’t want her to feel ashamed of or have to hide them because they are a part of who she is. She is openly deaf,» he continued.
Diversity must be valued in order to be visible.
Over time, Clare’s initiative and company expanded from selling a doll with braces to offering a variety of dolls that empower kids and encourage inclusion through play. She emphasises that because bullying frequently results from ignorance, it can only be stopped by educating oneself. «We have a right to be recognised and we are proud! We are not going to hide with our ‘differences’!»
Clare continues to conduct her business out of her dining room table. She has created roughly 3,000 dolls thus far.
Despite the fact that her business has expanded, she still has the same primary objective as when she first started it as a hobby: «To shout out loud that we are not going to hide with our «differences,» that we are here, we exist, and that we have a right to be recognised and proud of it!»
What additional dolls do you think Clare should make? What potential benefits do you see for young children with disabilities from these kind of initiatives?