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Feb 6, 2018

“Adapt to What You Have and Never Give Up.”

Being young and being philanthropic don’t often go together, and for good reasons. Young people—especially those between 17 and 30—face challenges that are both daunting and unprecedented: inflated tuition fees, increasingly constrained job markets, and home ownership that is often beyond reach. These challenges are heightened for those living with vision loss and blindness.

None of this has stopped Anson Wu from fighting for what he believes in. Diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) at 7 years old, Anson would face the hurdles that so many with RP and other retinal diseases experience. Due to the loss of his peripheral and night vision, many activities became inaccessible and friends were hard to come by after being marked as “different”. However, Anson persevered and continued to work hard in both academics and sports. In high school, he was placed in the gifted program and won many academic awards while also playing an active role on the school’s swim team, culminating with a back to back 50m and 100m freestyle gold in the York Regional Championships and team MVP honours. Anson went on to study science at the University of Guelph where he earned his thesis Masters in bioinformatics, a field that combines computational science and statistics to analyze and understand complex biological data.

Now 27, Anson has been donating monthly to Fighting Blindness Canada for 10 years, proving that youth and philanthropy are not mutually exclusive. He supports vision research because he believes in a future where vision loss can be restored, or perhaps even reversed. In the meantime, he lives according to the belief that you should “adapt to what you have and never give up,” regardless of the challenges you face. Thank you, Anson, for your generous support, and for showing us that no obstacle is insurmountable.

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