MERIAM Kamberipa, a Namibian creative, lets her fingers trace over the brail, reading and writing words which transform her existence into inspiring tales and possibilities that tether her to an outside world she can no longer perceive.
The 36-year-old woman, who gradually went completely blind while younger, will share her inspiring story and her project with the National Theatre of Namibia (NTN) by hosting story telling evenings centred around African Folklore.
The visually impaired story teller explains that she was born in Epukiro in the Omaheke Region and matriculated from the Windhoek Technical High School.
“I moved to Windhoek when I was three years old. I moved to the capital due to my eye problems. I was in and out of hospital and although the doctors did all they could, I completely lost my eyesight at a very tender age,” Kamberipa said.
She, however, did not allow her disability to shatter her dreams, and is currently studying Early Childhood Education at NAMCOL and also dipping her toes into the creative industry.
“Growing up, I dreamt of becoming a social worker or counsellor, which stems from my visual impairment and being able to experience the pain of others who are being abused. I, however, settled on becoming a writer, as it was my way of connecting to the outside world. Whenever my teachers tried to teach me something, I would always connect it to a story to understand it easier,” Kamberipa said.
She added that she does her story telling in Oshiwambo, Otjiherero, as well as in English.
Kamberipa is expected to make her debut today, 22 September, performing at 18:30 at the Okuryangava Woman Centre until tomorrow, 23 September.
She hopes that her participation in the project inspires other artists with disabilities, as they need opportunities to develop their talent.