On this day (May 11) in 2001 Caroline Casey, who is legally blind, returned to Dublin having trekked 1,000 kilometers across southern India, solo, on the back of an elephant. In 2011 Casey gave a TED Talk speaking about her inspiring life, work and some revelations.

Casey graduated from university and became a management consultant at Accenture. In June 2000, she quit her job and decided to follow her heart. She established the Aisling Foundations (“aisling” means dream and vision, in Irish, which is fitting). Her trip raised €250k for The Irish National Council for the Blind and SightSavers International.

The Aisling Foundation additionally housed a broader aim of creating a new image of disability, one that focused on the value of difference and the ability of people with disabilities. The Aisling Foundation has a new name, Kanchi, named after the elephant Caroline started it all with.

Below is Casey’s TED Talk from 2011. She tells the story of her extraordinary life, starting with a revelation.