Melanie Cooper founded of the Connect Learning Centre which recently opened in Toronto. She’s a visually impaired teacher who has experienced many challenges. She became legally blind while a 21 year old university student when she suffered a massive stroke that left her completely paralyzed on the left side. She had to interrupt her 4th year at the university to undergo extensive rehabilitation. Throughout her rehab, she maintained a positive attitude, determined to fulfill her dream to be a teacher. For her re-training in basic life skills, she attended a program provided by the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. It was this program, she says, that changed her life. Then she returned to teacher’s college at York University where she was the first legally blind teacher to graduate in Ontario. But the life-changing program ceased because of funding problems. Then she vowed to establish a life skills training program. This is how the Connect Learning Centre came to be.