Open University graduate with a disability receiving his degree

Rewriting the future, blink by blink

Open University graduate Dawn Faizey-Webster with specialist communication technology
Specialist technology can empower students with a disability like Dawn

Everyone deserves the chance to fulfil their potential. But what if the only part of your body that worked, however brilliantly, was your brain? Dawn, left completely paralysed after a stroke, couldn’t bear to let her dreams of being a role model for her son go to waste. Neither could we. 

Dawn completed a degree using a computer she operated by blinking just one eye. Although it took her a minute to ‘type’ every single word, she still had the same opportunities to learn as everyone else, thanks to the support of alumni and donors.

It has opened up a new future for Dawn and her young son, proving that, with the right support, ‘impossible’ is just a word. As one in eight Open University students faces health challenges, your help will make sure many other talented minds can look beyond their conditions and focus on their dreams.

Changing lives through education and more

Our research and education projects bring immeasurable benefits to so many lives, and we rely on the generosity of our donors for all of them. We’re already making a difference worldwide – but we have the potential to do even more. Each of our projects falls into one of four strands; opening up minds, opportunities, thinking and lives. 

Opportunities
Harnessing the full potential of our disabled veterans
Five members of the RAF
146
Lives
Join a movement of millions
Females studying at desk
126
Opportunities
Scholarships that defy expectations
Open University graduate celebrating her achievement with arms in the air
90
Opportunities
Rewriting the future, blink by blink
Open University graduate with a disability receiving his degree
85
Thinking
Sniffing out cancer
Cancer detection dog with white stripe on face looking into camera
96
Minds
Leading a new learning revolution
Looking at the OpenLearn website on a tablet
98
Thinking
A helping paw
Dog in training session
84
Opportunities
Helping offenders prepare for life after prison
Female student with study book
87
Lives
Bringing lessons to life across India
Pupils in classroom in India
89
Thinking
Helping stroke survivors walk tall
Prototype haptic bracelet
94
Minds
Sharing 50 years of education
Professor Wilson tutoring with The Open University
91
Lives
Sharing life-saving skills in developing countries
Smiling mother carrying baby in Africa
92
Opportunities
Using more minds to make discoveries in STEM
Female science researcher with lab equipment at The Open University
93
Lives
Creating an education revolution
Felicia, a teacher who uses the TESSA programme, with her pupils in Ghana
86
Minds
Building a fairer justice system
Model of human brain
88
Thinking
Helping people with dementia stay independent
Retail worker advising older customer
97
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