n 2014, Alfie Fisk was born to adoring parents Diana and Robert. But at four months of age everything changed when Alfie was diagnosed with Nystagmus – a vision condition caused by an abnormal function in the brain.
As Alfie’s mother Diana researched the condition, words like 'abused' 'bullied' and 'embarrassed' appeared as descriptors of the life children with Nystagmus experience growing up. Determined to provide a better future for Alfie, Diana needed to find someone who understood the challenges she and her family were about to face.
It was then Diana found Paralympian Jess Gallagher, and the inspiration she was looking for.
Despite being diagnosed with Stargardt’s disease - a type of macular degeneration that causes a loss of central vision - Jess has represented Australia in three different sports and is the first Australian athlete to medal at both the Winter and Summer Games. Declared legally blind, Jess is also an ambassador of numerous non-for-profit organisations, and
BEHIND THE SCENES
BEHIND THE SCENES
A short summary of the issue the documentary is addressing
In Australia 7% of children have a disability. In the modern world we are surrounded by labels and perceptions that lead to feelings of hopelessness and anxiety, not only for individuals but families, friends and communities that surround them.
How one approaches a diagnosis makes a significant difference to the life they live. Those who view it as a challenge or something to overcome will see new opportunities present and an alternative way of living.
This film will not only break down how we perceive a disability such as being legally blind, but it will also challenge the role of diagnosis and demonstrate two people who have made a very clear decision not to allow diagnosis dictate life.
What is the impact vision statement of the documentary?
Alfie's Film will provide communities with a much-needed conversation starter on diagnosis and disability, and prompt individuals to consider what is possible in sometimes a seemingly impossible situation.
What outcomes does the project hope to achieve from making this documentary?
The primary outcome for this documentary is to support and educate parents/carers who are learning of a disability or issue relating to their child.
The secondary outcome is for the greater community to view disability, particularly vision conditions in a new light, and break down negative perceptions that currently exist.
How will this documentary achieve its outcomes?
There will be a number of targeted screenings and panels to coincide with the release and Diana's existing relationship with Vision Australia and a number of other organisations in this space. Diana will speak to media and advocates to do further impact work such as blog posts, speaking opportunities, interviews and case studies.
How will partnerships with this project help inform the project development?
Yes, Vision Australia will be a partner in the release of this film and will utilise the content to assist their current and future clients.
Audience Engagement and Social Impact
What actions does this project hope for its viewers after seeing this film?
To seek support if they need it and to think differently about disability and the expectations that come along with it.
Measurement and Evaluation
What is the projects indicators for success?
When I have parents/carers contacting me personally and sharing how much it assisted them.