July 2017 - edition 7

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Nominations NOW OPEN for the 2017 Victorian DSR Awards.

winners from last years Victorian Disability Sport and Recreation award

We’re very pleased to announce nominations are now open for the 2017 Victorian DSR awards. You can nominate here  or email infor@dsr.org.au.

Nominations close Sunday July 23rd 2017.

The awards are an initiative of Disability Sport and Recreation and recognises the accomplishments of people with disability, those who support them, and the inclusive sport and recreation sector across the state.

It is an opportunity to celebrate the athletes, volunteers, clubs, communities, venues and programs that enable and empower people with disability to get active and achieve their goals.

This includes grass-roots participation in sport for the pure joy of physical activity to Paralympians striving to achieve on the world stage.

We are also pleased to announce that this year’s awards will be at a new venue at PricewaterhouseCoopers2 Riverside Quay Southbank from 4.30pm - 8.30pm which will allow a greater attendance. 

The date of Thursday 17th August 2017 is also earlier in the year to avoid clashes with other award ceremonies so it is shaping as the biggest and best awards yet.


2016 Winner of the Master Sportsperson & Female Sportsperson of the Year - Carol Cooke

Last year Carol Cooke won two awards at the DSR Awards - Master Sportsperson and Female Sportperson of the Year and as we accept nominations and gear up for the 2017 Awards, we cant help but reflect on Carol's significant achievements.

She is current Australian title holder for Women's T2 Road Race and Time Trial; World Champion in Women's T2 Time Trial and silver medallist for Road Race; and Paralympic gold medalist in both T2 Time Trial and Road Race.

She assists with mentoring new riders on St Kilda Cycling Club rides, volunteers at club events, and is an exception ambassador for cycling. Carol was awarded Cycling Australia's Elite Female paracyclist of the year in both 2012 & 2015 and was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in the 2014 Australia Day Honours for significant service to sport as a gold medallist at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, and through fundraising and representational roles with charitable healthcare organisations.

The current World Champion in her sport, Carol motivates others living with MS to fulfil their dreams. In 2001, Carol established the 24-hour Mega Swim, which has since raised more than $6.2 million towards scholarships for people living with MS. While she has good and bad days, Carol has learnt to live for today and inspires Australians to focus on what they can do, rather than what they can’t.

Who will it be for 2017? You can nominate for Masters Sportsperson of the Year here and Female Sportsperson of the Year here.

Wheelchair basketball coming to the City of Casey

Casey Basketball Association in partnership with the City of Casey are bringing wheelchair basketball to the region. Please also see the article here put together by Helping Hand which provides some background on the program.

To register your expression of interest contact: Casey Basketball Association or phone: (03) 5996 6033.

DSR and YMCA are currently developing a partnership program of events and activities focusing on the new Casey stadium in Cranbourne that is a state of the art inclusive facility that will benefit people with a disability not only in Casey but in the whole South East of Melbourne.


Blind Sports and Recreation Vic - new circuit program

New Circuit Program

Commencing on July 6, Hawthorn Aquatic & Leisure Centre in conjunction with Blind Sports & Recreation Victoria will be holding classes in Boxing, Tai Chi and Yoga/Pilates in 4 week blocks.

If this is something that interests you, why not come down and give it a go!

Where:      Hawthorn Aquatic Centre
                  1 Grace St, Hawthorn
                   (near Glenferrie Railway Station)

When:        Commences Thursday, July 6

Cost:          $5.20 per session (concession)

For further information or to register your interest, please contact Sandra at sandra@blindsports.org.au or telephone 9822 8876.


Meet member of the month - Brendan Stroud

Cambell Message in his track chair at the finish line of Run 4 the Kids

Our members come from all walks of life and many have fascinating stories to tell. We would like to share some of them with you, so each month, we will feature a member in this newsletter.

This month we are featuring Brendan Stroud, Brendan is one of our Wheeltalk presenters and has been a member of Disability Sport & Recreation for many years. Brendan is also a motivational speaker who talks with passion about his life experiences and how he has been able to rise above these challenges to become a person with a driving force to help others. You can read more about how Brendan uses his platform as an advocate to inspire positive change here.


Wheelchair Dance Sport

Disability Sports Australia is calling for expressions of interest in Wheelchair Dance Sports. 

Very popular overseas DSA are setting up this Paralympic recognised sport from grassroots and are looking for dancers, officials, volunteers and studios to get involved in the various states. No prior experience necessary and it is open to people of any age.

Fancy getting involved? Click here for more info and to fill out an expression of interest form.

You can watch a clip of this fabulour sport here


Future leaders stretch their limits

Poster that says: Nominations open soon. Victorian Disability Sport and Recreation Awards. New date and venue for 2017... stay tuned for updates

Participants in our future leader’s program have been working very hard over the past year with their mentors so we recently decided it was time to get together to reflect and have some fun as a group.

We convened over an aerial yoga class, which was quite an experience! Founder of Vibes Fitness, Margie Cerato introduced this practice and hosted the day. With over 30 years’ experience in the health, wellness, exercise & rehab industry 5 years ago, Margie set up a Not for Profit “Celebrating Abilities” which focuses on the ability not the disability, which ties in quite well with our vision!

Aerial yoga is a cross between yoga, pilates, suspension training, calisthenics, and gymnastics. Participants are suspended in hammocks low to the ground to enable stretching & lengthening your whole spine & body with less strain. Margie instructed a restorative session, focusing on the body, mind and spirit. Teamwork, reflection and giggles were the order of the day.

Well done to our future leaders for quite literally stretching their limits using all their abilities. With newfound energy and enthusiasm, the focus is now on the last three months of the program before graduation this August.

Occupational Therapy students gain invaluable real-world skills working with DSR

Two students from Monash University - Matt and Tessa recently finished their community practice placement with DSR after undertaking a year long project developing skills in project design and management and working to address a population health based occupational issue.

The topic of the project was centred around boosting and developing the participation in sport by children with disabilities. Extensive background research including literature review, stakeholder consultation, consultancy with experts in the field, and volunteering with the field, found that the DSR Kids Hospital Program reflects current evidence base and best practice of introducing sport and recreation during rehabilitation or hospital admissions.

The project aimed to support this current program through the development of resources to assist allied health professionals in advocating for sport and rec participation for their patients. Matt and Tessa began working towards a webinar in partnership with Occupation Therapy Australia and produced an information brochure to raise awareness and educate families about the DSR kids hospital program, and the benefits of sport and recreation for their child’s health, well-being and in completing daily functional tasks.

We spoke to Tessa and Matt at the end of the project and they both felt very positive about the outcomes “My involvement in the DSR-university project was a fantastic learning experience as a student! The experience gave me the opportunity to manage a project, an emerging and exciting role for occupational therapists that I now feel I could take on once I graduate. I have developed valuable ‘real-world’ skills such as working within a team, leadership, time-management and increased confidence" said Tessa.

Moreover, Matt went on to explain “Throughout my work with DSR, I not only improved my professional standards and contributed to my fieldwork hours, I was also able to improve the outcomes of many disadvantaged kids by designing information brochures and setting up future relationships with high profile organisations".

AFL Wheelchair season fixture

Three men in wheelchairs prepare for the opening throw in a game of AFL Wheelchair.

The first season of AFL Wheelchair is underway and is seeking new participants both with and without a disability to join this exciting new sport.

Session times and locations

9 July, 12 – 3pm, Western Oval
16 July, 1 – 4pm, CILC
23 July, 1 – 4pm, Darebin
30 July, 1 – 4pm, Boroondara
6 Aug, 12:30 – 3:30pm, MSAC
13 Aug, 3 - 6pm, Darebin
27 Aug, 10am - 4pm, CILC (State Championships)

Boroondara Sports Complex - 271C Belmore Rd, Balwyn North
Western Oval - 417 Barkly St, Footscray
CILC - 65 Berwick-Cranbourne Rd, Cranbourne East
MSAC - 30 Aughtie Dr, Albert Park
Darebin Community Sports Center - 857 Plenty Rd, Reservoir

For more information, contact Tim Nield, FIDA Football and
AAA Programs Manager, at AFL Victoria on 8341 6023 or

CyclePower 2017 Wrap Up

The Cycle Power 2017 Bali challenge has been successfully completed with the crew enjoying an exhilarating 35km downhill ride from Kintamini through incredible scenery balanced by cultural exchanges at various stops including the Taman Nusa culture park, the Penglipuran village (school graduation performance) finished by a Hare Krishna festival in Sanur with dozens of massive kites.

The tour was challenging with many steep hills, hot weather and traffic balanced by the sheer delight of meeting so many incredible people and breathtaking scenery and food.

All along the way, we have demonstrated what's possible for people with a disability to lead a full and rich life while learning much from other cultures and approaches.

Thanks to all the Cycle Power 2017 participants who rose to the challenge physically and mentally and displayed significant respect for our hosts and the people we met along the way. I'm sure there were many who were significantly touched by having met us or simply observed us flashing past.

Thanks to the magnificent Exo tours crew lead by Eddie and his guides, drivers, cooks etc who made it so easy for us to achieve our goals and kept us as safe as possible. We didn't always believe what you told us - "only a small hill left" but we loved your positive spirit and willingness to learn about special needs.

Thanks to the Bali Sports Foundation for your generosity in hosting an incredible day together at your centre and also for joining us on the road.

Fierce 4 Rugby series results

On June 16  -18 Victoria Protect Thunder traveled up to the Gold Coast to compete in round 3 of the "Fierce 4 Rugby series"

Victoria fielded a new look team with 3 changes from the team that took out the first two rounds of the series.

After 3 days of hard fought rugby Victoria Protect Thunder won their way through to the gold medal match thanks to a memorable 1 point victory over Queensland.

Vic Thunder could not match the New Zealand national team in the final and had to settle with the silver.

Jason Lees from Victoria Protect Thunder said " Although todays result is very disappointing I am very proud of how our new players performed. Shae Graham showed some great signs and could be a player to watch out for in the future"

Next stop for the Thunder is August 2-5 for the Australian Championships in Sydney.

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