Heroes of CP: Nath Fernandes – Part 2/4 (Disability)

It is an absolute pleasure to introduce you to Nath Fernandez, what an inspirational guy! Whilst dealing with severe Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy which affects both arms, and both legs along with associated communication difficulties, Nath has built 2 businesses (and since this interview has gone onto developing his third). His most recent project is Dynamically Awesome, a business providing ‘accessible for all’ team building birthday parties to children aged 6-12.

Dynamically Awesome: http://dynamically-awesome.co.uk/

My stand out moments

The transcript of the interview is as follows:

“I need assistance with everyday living, for example: washing, cooking and cleaning, which is where my 11 PA’s come in. I guess the other aspect of Cerebral Palsy which is a problem for me is my speech difficulty. I think it has been one of the main barriers for me because when you have a speech difficulty I think society automatically thinks that you are mentally incapable by just that. I think if I could talk normally people would have a different reaction.

I like to think about myself as an outgoing person who will get on with anyone and everyone. I don’t give up very easily, if I want to do something I will find a way of doing it, even though that isn’t simple, but oh well.

I like to prove people wrong. I think society is set up in a way that is generalised, when you meet someone like me people will think, ‘oh yeah he can’t do that thing’ so I say ‘yeah I can so shut up, I’ll do it’.

Like coming up here today, I can’t drive up, and I really don’t want to rely on my PA to drive up, so the obvious way was to get the train, although it took about three hours, and I have that to look forward to, but I don’t mind that.”

An update from Nath about his new business:

Nath Fernandes (who has severe Cerebral Palsy) has since gone onto developing his third business, Dynamically Awesome providing teambuilding birthday parties to children aged 6-12. During these parties, children must work as a team to complete challenges including The Cube and The Labyrinth obtaining keys to unlock a treasure chest full of goodies! The concept stemmed from Nath’s daily experience working with his 12 PAs and the important role that teamwork plays in order to achieve his goals. When Nath was growing up, finding a suitable venue or activity became a challenge in itself; most of the time it was either bowling or the cinema followed by a meal. As a result, one of the aims that Nath set for Dynamically Awesome is to adapt these parties to be ‘accessible for all’ thus this summer he is working closely with a charity to trial some adapted challenges to ensure that participants have the most awesome time ever, after all, that’s what birthday parties are for!