New awards seeks to acknowledge valued work of disabled people

Posted 10 months ago by Nicole Pope

The National Awards for Disability Leadership is currently fielding nominations of its first awards ceremony coming up in December [Source: Shutterstock]
The National Awards for Disability Leadership is currently fielding nominations of its first awards ceremony coming up in December [Source: Shutterstock]

An event to acknowledge the valuable work both individuals and organisations do within the disability sector has been brought to life thanks to a collaboration between three disability organisations, after the National Disability Awards were abandoned this year.

Disability Leadership Institute, Australian Federation of Disability Organisations and Disabled People’s Organisations Australia have come together to create the National Awards for Disability Leadership which is currently fielding nominations of its first awards ceremony coming up in December.

Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Disability Leaders Institute, Christina Ryan says the National Awards for Disability Leadership came about as the Federal Government wasn’t interested in continuing the National Disability Awards.

“A number of people in the disability community realised we still didn’t have any real acknowledgment of achievements of people with disability in Australia, so we collaborated together to make it happen.”

Ms Ryan says she is “very excited” and the event is “looking fantastic.”

The awards are divided into seven categories; The Arts, Change Making, Rights Activism, Innovation, Social Impact and Inclusion with the Lesley Hall Lifetime Achievement Award, previously presented at the National Disability Awards, symbolising a sense of continuity.

Ms Ryan says the Lesley Hall Lifetime Achievement Award was included with the blessing of Lesley’s family and is for individuals who have been working over a lengthy period of time to produce significant outcomes for people with disability in Australia.

“We really wanted to acknowledge the incredible amount of work by disabled people for disabled people and the seven categories reflect that.”

“We have worked quite hard on these [categories] in the collab group, as there’s been lot of leadership, incredible change making and innovation in the disability community and it’s all about recognising that work,” she says.

The National Awards for Disability Leadership will be presented through a global live webcast on the Disability Leadership Institute's YouTube Channel to allow maximum inclusion for people who may be unable to attend the event.

Ms Ryan says people will be holding parties and events to view the awards, making it a fantastic celebration of the achievements of people with disability.

“Think Hottest 100 … we are encouraging people no matter where you are as long as you’ve got a device and internet connection you can watch what’s going on, with people presenting and attending from all over the country,” she says.

The event will also be live captioned to allow it to be “as inclusive as possible.”

Ms Ryan says people will be holding parties and events to view the awards, making it a fantastic celebration of the achievements of people with disability.

“People with disabilities are incredibly innovative people and great problem solvers. It’s not just about technology, it’s about thinking outside the box, such as a new way a program should be run or how a company can approach a particular circumstance so it’s more inclusive.”

To be an eligible nomination you must be living with a disability or be a disabled person’s organisation.

The nomination submission process also requires a 30 second video detailing the nominee’s work or a two minute video for nominations in the Arts category.

Ms Ryan says the idea around the video nominations is to demonstrate the diversity how we all communicate.

“I can’t wait to see the nominations coming in.”

Nominations close 12 November, with the event to be held on 3 December from 12.30pm.

For more information on the National Awards for Disability Leadership click here.

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