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Molly takes on challenges
Molly Bradshaw and her friends Hannah Owen-Conway and Morgan Broomhall skip to class at Swanbourne Primary School. Picture: Steve Ferrier/The West Australian

Molly Bradshaw faces many challenges, including not being able to see and hear the world around her.

And while super-strength glasses and a hearing aid help, the nine-year-old sometimes relies on her Year 3 friends at Swanbourne primary to lead the way.

Molly is one of almost 8000 West Australians who face the double disability of living with deafness and blindness.

A report by Senses Australia, released as part of Disability Awareness Week, found more females than males have a dual sensory loss, and many report it has a big effect on their everyday activities.

Born with a rare syndrome, Molly has 30 per cent vision and this is deteriorating. She has moderate hearing loss in her right ear.

But her mother Lynn said she made up for her physical limitations with perseverance and hard work. "She's a very sociable girl and is always happy, and being part of mainstream schooling is so important," Mrs Bradshaw said.

"We just want Molly to be as independent as possible."

Senses Australia chief executive Debbie Karasinski said the report would help plan for the needs of people with vision and hearing loss.

A free event to celebrate today's International Day of People with Disability will be held at 10.30am at Forrest Place