• Ryan Sullivan with Yvette Berry

    Ryan Sullivan with Yvette Berry

  • James Dunstan with Yvette Berry

    James Dunstan with Yvette Berry

  • Fergus Nelson with Yvette Berry

    Fergus Nelson with Yvette Berry

  • Ayesha Razzaq with Yvette Berry

    Ayesha Razzaq with Yvette Berry

  • Dianne Hamer with Yvette Berry

    Dianne Hamer with Yvette Berry

  • Nip Wijewickrema and Jessica May

    Nip Wijewickrema and Jessica May

  • Shaun Cahill and Zac Pinchen

    Shaun Cahill and Zac Pinchen

  • Graeme Muddle, Judy Anderson and Darren Hooper

    Graeme Muddle, Judy Anderson and Darren Hooper

  • Ryan Sullivan, Joanne Bryce and Scott Laing

    Ryan Sullivan, Joanne Bryce and Scott Laing

  • Cara Matthews, David Heckendorf and Mark Knowles

    Cara Matthews, David Heckendorf and Mark Knowles

  • James Dunstan, Jessica may, Hugh Chalmers, Carolyn Grayson and in front Craig Wallace

    James Dunstan, Jessica may, Hugh Chalmers, Carolyn Grayson and in front Craig Wallace

  • David Hill and Fergus Nelson

    David Hill and Fergus Nelson

  • Nancy Tingey and Minoli Nugara

    Nancy Tingey and Minoli Nugara

  • Cindy Young and Kim Eason

    Cindy Young and Kim Eason

  • Meredith Whitten and Yvette Berry

    Meredith Whitten and Yvette Berry

  • Darren Hooper, Dianne Hamer and Paul Donohoe

    Darren Hooper, Dianne Hamer and Paul Donohoe

  • The imposing wooden facade of the Nishi Building where at Hotel Hotel's Mosaic Room the Inclusion Awards Sponsors lunched.

    The imposing wooden facade of the Nishi Building where at Hotel Hotel's Mosaic Room the Inclusion Awards Sponsors lunched.

Inclusion Awards - Sponsors Lunch

9 April 2015

In his address to the Canberra Business Chamber on the State of the Territory Chief Minister Andrew Barr made it very clear that he will continue to promote and support ‘Inclusion’ across the government and the territory and would be adding Yvette Berry as his ‘sidekick’ to the task of getting involved in all aspects of what is needed in the disability sector. OK sidekick is my word, Yvette’s own title had me in stitches and sorry I can’t repeat it here because it was a bit blushmaking under the circumstances but I’ll file it for the future.

We were gathered in the industrial strength designed space that is Hotel Hotel and Monster Bar of the Nishi Building for a celebratory lunch in the Mosaic Room to acknowledge and present the sponsors of the Inclusion Awards with a framed certificate that is invaluable to the continuation of the awards that have made a significant difference to all aspects of the disability sector.

The 2014 awards were a mix of joy and sadness. Joy for all those awarded and sadness that Stella Young had died a few days prior to what was a favourite gig for this most exceptional advocate and inspiring person with a zingy sense of style and performance. But her absence brought out the best in all of us to make sure that those who most need our support will get it and Paul Donohue’s beautiful tribute to Stella Young on the awards night brought tears and laughter for a woman who epitomised the ability of the disabled.

At this lunch it was David Heckendorf who as a judge of the awards is well able to assess the contenders. He - and his wife – have cerebal palsy. They require carers for many basic tasks and accompanying  David at this lunch was Minoli Nugara one of a happy band of carers who admire and respect this couple. David has an online business trading coins, is a director of a company that requires him to travel to Brisbane and Melbourne often and has jut registered for GST which indicates he’s making money. He’s an ANU law graduate and worked for many years as a public servant. And for me an exceptional person with a wonderful personality and incredible tenacity. Oh, and he’s in a wheelchair.
You never know unless you take time to find out. Inclusion means taking time to make the adjustments and changes, to support and acknowledge when that can make a difference in a life that is tough enough already.