Nominations now open for Geelong Awards for People with Disability

Nominations of individuals with disability who have demonstrated outstanding achievements in advocacy, leadership, empowering others in the workplace or in a voluntary capacity or who have achieved a significant milestone or success, are invited for the Geelong Awards for People with Disability.

The opening of nominations on Thursday 17 June coincided with the annual VALiD Having a Say conference which was held online from 16 to 17 June 2021.

Now in its sixth year, and its second year delivered by the City, the awards program is an important part of the City’s work in building an accessible and inclusive community for all while celebrating the achievements of those with disability. Previous awards have recognised recipients leading in their chosen fields, advocating for equal treatment and access for those with disability and empowering those around them.Last year Ainslee Hooper was awarded the Employment Award for her consultancy work which helps businesses identify opportunities to remove invisible barriers through a holistic approach to accessibility.

Ainslee Hooper said the awards are important for the whole Greater Geelong community.

These awards are important because they highlight the diversity that exists within the disability community and help to break down stereotypes.

They also help to inspire younger people with disabilities, showing there are more opportunities available to them than they may think.

Nominations can be made in the following categories:

  • Employment Award – recognising someone who has achieved success or made a substantial contribution to empowering and developing others in the workplace or the community;
  • Achievement Award – recognising someone who has achieved a significant milestone or success in any area;
  • Leadership and Advocacy Award – recognising someone who has led or advocated for others to achieve a considerable outcome or advancement; and
  • Volunteering Award – recognising someone who has demonstrated exceptional commitment or made a substantial contribution towards empowering and developing others in a voluntary capacity.

Winners will be announced online via the City’s social media channels and website during Social Inclusion Week, which runs from 20 to 28 November 2021.

Social Inclusion Week is delivered by Play It Forward and aims to help all Australians feel included and valued, giving everyone the opportunity to participate fully in society.

Greater Geelong Mayor Stephanie Asher said the awards are a great way to celebrate the extraordinary members in our community.

We’ve seen in previous years the incredible achievements of those with disability in our community, as they advocate for better access and inclusion, create opportunities for others and support peers to reach their potential.

As we continue towards our community’s clever and creative aspiration to create an inclusive, diverse, healthy and socially connected community for all, it’s important we recognise those in the region who are contributing to this vision through their work, advocacy and volunteering.

I encourage everyone to think of who they know who may be eligible for the awards and to consider nominating them this year.

genU CEO Clare Amies said she was excited for genU to be involved in the awards.

We’re excited to again be part of these fantastic awards which celebrate truly exceptional people making a real difference in the community.

There are many people in the Geelong community who deserve recognition for their amazing efforts, and we look forward to celebrating their achievements through these awards.

The awards are being delivered by the City in partnership with genU, supported by the Barwon Disability Resource Council and the VictorianAdvocacy League for Individuals with Disability (VALiD).

For more information on each award category, nominee eligibility, selection criteria and to nominate visit

Nominations close at 5:00pm on Friday 8 October 2021.

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