I was born in Shrewsbury and I moved to Spain when I was 3 years old, I did all my schooling over there and was a very active young girl, raised with excellent morals, to have plenty of ambitions and with a good work ethic to achieve them. In Spain you were allowed to drive a 50CC motorcycle at 14, I passed my driving exam and I was on my way. I was allowed one because I was very responsible and considerate and it helped me get to all the after school activities I was involved in, i.e. theatre, dance classes, horse riding, I even had a part time job to pay for my petrol.
My whole world collapsed 6 weeks after my 14th birthday, a small van driver did not see me, turned left and smacked straight in to me, I had a helmet on and it was fastened but it was that first impact that shook my head and brain so hard that it had put me in a six-week coma, basically I died for a bit.
I was in a coma for several months suffering with a life changing traumatic brain injury. I had my teenage years stolen from me and I was left wheelchair bound for a long time; I had to re-learn every normal day to day activities as a baby does: holding my head up, sitting up straight, crawling, going to the toilet...
Prior to the accident I was attaining a scholarship to a drama school in Barcelona and was working very hard to achieve my goals, so you can understand how frustrating it was when at the age of 22, I was told by a council in Spain to stay at home and live of my compensation as I was now disabled and I wouldn’t get a job.
My mother and I returned to the UK shortly after this happened as we also realised that one of my conditions was heat intolerance and that wasn’t very nice for living in Spain.
My strength of mind and determination overcame the physical challenges; I’ll never be 100% but I get on with things. Not allowing myself to be deterred by the pessimistic attitudes of others and obstacles constantly passing my way, I have acquired many qualifications and had various successes in everything I have actively participated in.
A charity called Progress found a stewarding course with a guaranteed interview at the end of said course.
A steward needs to be able bodied so I had to lie on the test papers so I could get the qualification as I knew that I had something special to offer and so did the teachers .
Chris Baker saw in me what many failed to see, he saw the determination and stubbornness in me that I have acquired and needed all these years. He gave me my first on going job, it was ad-hoc but that is far better than nothing, he had to devise a position that suited my conditions and my customer service experiences, he gave me the very important role of DLA “Disability liaison Assistant” that position has given me the tools I needed to get further in life (respect, patience, knowledge but most importantly, it helped me mature too).
It is a cruel world but I don’t and won’t allow myself to fall victim of the masses, yes I get depressed and yes I get frustrated- I have my moments but then I get on with life.
Thanks to Chris giving me the push I needed, I am now well on my way to success.
Ms. Tara Mary Moore.