PROFILE: From losing eyesight to topping UK music chart; here is Crystal Asige’s inspiring story
Published on: July 23, 2021 11:32 (EAT)
By Patience Nyange and Esther Kiragu In the journey of life, at one point or another we have all asked ourselves who am I and why do I exist? This week on the #KenyaWomenSeries Vol 32 we feature a lady who after years of trying to figure out her place in the world, finally found her niche which presently reads: An award-winning Artist, Amnesty International Kenya Board member, visual arts trained disability and inclusion champion, YouTuber and public speaker…who just happens to be blind! Ladies and Gentlemen please give a warm applause to Crystal Asige. It is hard to miss Crystal Asige’s great sense of humour. She describes herself as crazy about music, expression, rights and freedoms, diversity and inclusion, as well as a champion for accessibility for all; no matter one’s ability or disability. “I seek to create awareness around the intersectionalities of being a young, black-African, female entrepreneur and leader with an invisible disability. I endeavor to set up models that disrupt negative perceptions, with the hope that I will have exponential impact in society at large. Her love with the arts began at an early age, when she understood her ability to, and the importance of, standing alone. Inventing songs in my head to express how the bullies in nursery school made me feel sad and lonely at age 3 may have been ‘cute’ to my mum at the time, but in retrospect Art saves people. Art has the power to transform my sorrows into beauty and to turn my despair into hope. Brenne Brown puts it this way: music gives our most heart-wrenching pain voice, language and form so that it can be recognized and shared. Even having no way to articulate it as well as she did, somehow I had that deep knowing somewhere inside of me when I sang about the bullies as a little girl to my mum. Isn’t that incredible? Apart from that very significant event, others have been:
- Performing internationally.
- My music reaching #1 in a UK chart show.
- Writing and performing with some of the biggest musicians in East Africa.
- How do I continue checkups with my glaucoma doctors in hospitals that are full?
- How can I afford to pay for myself and my sighted guide on public transport when prices aren’t being regulated?
- How can I even social distance at all if I need to grab someone’s elbow to assist me to get around?