The City of Monash has joined forces with Knox City Council and the Shire of Yarra Ranges to host a free four-session advocacy course for people with a disability. Presented by well-known disability advocate Dr George Taleporos, the course supports advocates to develop their understanding of advocacy principles and strategies for change.
“We need to understand that the problem of disability lies in the failure of society to accommodate the needs of people with different abilities and not within the individuals themselves,” says Dr Taleporos.
Dr Taleporos would know more than most about the issues of disability as he was born with spinal muscular atrophy, and needs to use an electric wheelchair. “Having been a young person with a disability myself not too long ago has made me aware of the many barriers that young people with disabilities face,” he adds.
Dr George is 29 years old and holds a PhD in Psychology and a first class honours degree in sociology. He has been published in several books and international peer-reviewed journals including Social Science and Medicine and Sexuality and Disability.
In 2003, he placed third in Victoria out of 280 competitors in the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. He is also a star of No Limits, an award winning Channel 31 television show that aims to bring the world of disability into people’s living rooms in an informative and entertaining way.
Mayor Paul Klisaris welcomed the advocacy course initiative and said it was important for people of all abilities to understand how to work together with boards, committees, government advisories and self help groups for change within our community.
“Council is pleased to be able to offer these important training sessions at no cost for local residents with disabilities. The sessions will focus on how to advocate for change and will help participants to develop an understanding of the advocacy principles and strategies that can translate into making real and lasting changes within our community,” he adds.
The course consists of four sessions to be held on Friday 6, 13, 20 and 27 March from 12pm to 3.30pm at venues both Knox and Boronia. The course will be fully wheelchair accessible and Auslan interpreters will be on hand. Materials will be available in alternate formats and attendant care support will be fully catered for.
For further information or to register, please contact Emma Cramer at the City of Monash on 9518 3655.