June 2018

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Email info@dsr.org.au or call (03) 9473 0133.

Harlequins take their third straight cup

Harlequin wheelchair rugby team being awarded the trophy

The final of the Protect Victoria Wheelchair Rugby Cup was played out on Saturday at Aqualink Box Hill.

In what was a very tight first half, teams traded goals back and forth to enter the half time break level at 17 tries all.

The defensive pressure of Harlequin high pointer Matt Lewis was able to force turnovers at critical times in the second half and Harlequins were able to get a break against a brave Melbourne Unicorns team mid way through the third period.

Despite the best efforts of Unicorn Jayden Warn, who topped the scoring sheet for his team, Harlequins ran out eventual winners 35-27.

In the earlier game Power House were too strong for a young Box Hill team and took home the bronze medal 37-27.

Congratulations also to Matt Lewis of the Harlequins, who was awarded MVP of the season.

With the Victorian season wrapping up, attention now shifts to the Australian Steelers team who leave our shores on Thursday to compete in back to back tournaments in Colorado Springs and Vancouver in preparation for the World Championships in Sydney this August.

Good luck to the five Victorians eyeing off a spot on that team.

Kevin Coombs Indigenous Round celebrates Aboriginal history and culture

Aboriginal man

Round 4 of the Robert Rose Foundation Victorian Wheelchair Football League, held last Sunday, was named the Kevin Coombs Indigenous Round to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history and culture.

Kevin Coombs OAM, a Wotjobaluk Elder, was Australia's first Indigenous Paralympian and a founding member of our organisation.

You can read more about Kevin and his impact on disability sport in Australia on the VWFL website

The celebration included a welcome to country and Richmond and Essendon providing specially designed indigenous round jumpers for their players.

We kicked off our celebrations with an AFL Wheelchair demonstration at the Long Walk community festival at Federation Square last Saturday. It was great to see the interest in this new sport and kids loving their experience in the wheelchair having a go!

Thanks to the players from Essendon and Richmond wheelchair football teams for coming along on the day.

Don't forget, you can keep up to date with the season fixture and results on the league website.

The next round of matches on Sunday 17 June at Boroondara Sports Complex looks to be a beauty with a big clash between the two undefeated teams, Richmond and Collingwood, at 11am followed by Hawthorn v St Kilda at 12pm. 


Collingwood wheelchair team captain, Brendan Stroud, in the Northcote Leader.

Hawthorn wheelchair football player, Alex Gale-Grime, in the Sporting Chance Magazine.

Wheelpower to succeed

Smiling man

Our WheelTalk presenter Orfeo made it into the Shepparton News recently.

Goulburn Valley Grammar School physical education teacher, Serrin Monk, said the Year 10 class really enjoyed the WheelTalk program and Orfeo shared stories about his disability and how he described himself as lucky.

‘‘They learnt tolerance and appreciation for the sport, especially the kids who play basketball. They were made aware of the challenges and thought ‘this is actually really hard’,’’ she said.

Read the full article online.

Have you booked Orfeo to visit your school this year? 

It's that time of year...

Tax deductible donations

Did you know that we are only able to offer our programs and services because of the generous support of the community?

We receive less then 10% government funding, which means we rely on people like YOU. 

Wth the end of the financial year fast approaching, now is a great time to help us in our mission to transform the lives of people with disability.


Luke sets his sights on powerchair world championships

Two men sitting in electric sportschairs ready to play powerchair hockey

This issue of Vortex we’d like you to meet one of our members, Luke David.

Luke was recently chosen to be part of the Australian Powerchair Hockey Team that will compete in the World Championships in Sabbiadoro, Italy from 24 September to 1 October 2018.

Powerchair Hockey is a modified version of Ice Hockey/Floorball for electric wheelchair users. The sport is played on an indoor basketball court with two teams of five players on the court.

This is the first time Luke will travel overseas – a big win in itself – but it will be very costly in terms of flights, accommodation, support workers and having legal Powerchairs to play in.

Another Victorian, Shaun, has also been chosen for the team and both athletes are looking at costs of more than $10,000 to take part in the championships. 

Specialised wheelchairs for the sport cost in excess of $13,000. While some athletes will hire these during the event, Luke has respiratory issues that mean he will need to mount his ventilator onto the chair beforehand, which will require more work.

Both Luke and Shaun are running fundraising campaigns if you’d like to support them attending the championships later this year.

Luke: https://asf.org.au/athletes/luke-david/

Shaun: www.gofundme.com/5semb-help-me-represent-australia

This will be the first time Victoria is represented on the World Stage in Powerchair Sports. You can find out more about the sport online.

Four thumbs up for Harry and Andre

Four men giving the thumbs up

This fortnight we are lucky to have Harry and Andre with us, taking on a shared placement between our organisation and Special Olympics Victoria.

Harry and Andre are studying the Certificate I Work Education (Sport) through Victoria University Polytechnic - a course specifically for people with an intellectual disability who are interested in a career in the sport and recreation industry.

The guys are having a blast getting some hands-on experience and we're loving the energy they bring to the office.

If you're interested in finding out more about the course, contact Monique on:

Email: monique.fitzgerald@vu.edu.au
Phone: (03) 9919 5583

Melissa Tapper named National Para Athlete of the Year

Melissa Tapper playing table tennis

Table Tennis Australia recently announced that Victorian athlete, Melissa Tapper, has won the Arthur Wilks Trophy as the National Para Athlete of the Year for 2017-18. 

Melissa was the standout candidate for the award, based on her high performance results that include gold medals at the 2017 Australian National Para Champs, 2017 Oceania Para Regionals, 2017 Korea Para Open and 2018 Commonwealth Games.

Melissa also displays great sportspersonship, appearance and punctuality.

Congratulations Melissa!

Reclink Community Cup is a win for inclusion

Reclink Community Cup Melbourne Sunday 24 June Victoria Park

The Reclink Community Cup is an iconic fixture on Melbourne’s rock and roll, football and charity calendars, with the Megahertz (community radio) and Rockdogs (musicians) battling it out for the title every year. 

Proceeds from the fundraising event go towards the specialist sport, recreation and arts programs that Reclink runs for at-risk youth, people with mental illness or disability, people experiencing homelessness and domestic violence, and those facing alcohol, gambling and substance addictions.

But how many of us know what happens behind the scenes?

Rory Burnside, coach of the 2018 Rockdogs team, is blind as well as having epilepsy and asperger's.

Not letting that stop him, he's also front man for internationally acclaimed band Rudely Interrupted.

You can catch all the action on Sunday 24 June, 2018 at Victoria Park, Abbotsford.

You can find more information online.

Get active outdoors with the YMCA

People on handcycles in outdoor terrain

Are you looking for a fun and thrill-seeking way to get active? Then the Active Outdoors Day Program is for you!

Try different types of equipment on the tracks and trails at Mt Evelyn Camp in the beautiful Dandenong Ranges, including handcycles, power assist attachments and the Trail Rider from Parks Victoria.

When: Saturday 30th June

Time: 10am-3pm

Where: Mt Evelyn Recreation Camp, 70 Tramway Road Mt Evelyn 3796

Cost: Free

Lunch will be provided, followed by an afternoon of adventure and the chance to have a go at the fully accessible Giant Swing!

For more information, email Jason Ellery or register your interest online.

International para-badminton championships are coming to Geelong

Two people playing para-badminton

The Greater City of Geelong has been announced as the host of the Australian Para-Badminton International and Oceania Para-Badminton Championships from 20-29 November, 2018.

These are the first world-ranking para-badminton events that will be held in Australia.

The events will welcome over 150 athletes, team officials, event administrators, and volunteers from all around the world.

All Australian athletes new to international-level para-badminton events are encouraged to take part. A prospectus and entry forms will be released in a couple of months.

Badminton is an Olympic, Paralympic, and Commonwealth Games sport. Para-Badminton caters for people with physical disabilities and will be an official sport for the first time at the Tokyo 2020
Paralympic Games.

For more information, contact Badminton Australia:

Phone: (03)3 9397 4722
Email: participation@badminton.org.au

Victorian Interschool Snowsports Multiclass Championships

Group of students outside a ski school

The Multiclass Snowsports Championships are included in the Victorian Interschool Championships with an inclusive race on Wednesday 22nd August.

School aged students with a physical or intellectual impairment who are capable skiers or snowboarders are invited to take part in the event.

A preparation training camp will be held by Disabled Wintersports Australia (DWA) before the event, on Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st August.

The camp is open to any DWA member who is entered in the race and can competently ski or snowboard down a blue run course at Mt Buller. Students need to have parent or guardian supervision at Mt Buller, accommodation and transport.

To register your child’s interest, email Liz Gosper by Friday 27th July 2018 with your child’s name, age, skier or boarder and your contact details.

2018 Balloon Football League® All Stars Match

Group of people playing balloon football

You are invited to the annual Balloon Football League (BFL) All Stars match!

Experience all the thrills and action of the competition as the state’s top players battle it out for the prized BFL cup!

When: Wednesday 11thJuly 2018

Time: 11:00am - 2:00pm

Where: Melbourne Sports & Aquatic Centre (MSAC)
30 Aughtie Drive, Albert Park 3206

RSVP: Friday 6th July 2018.

For more information or to RSVP, contact  Guy Brown:

Phone: 0419 509 208
Email: gbrown@scopeaust.org.au

Walk, Run and Roll in Melton

Reclink Australia

Melton Reclink are running a monthly Walk, Run and Roll ramble around the park.

Where: Hanna Watts Park, 177-188 High Street, Melton

When: First Thursday of every month, 10:30am - 12pm

Who: Anyone 16 years and over, all abilities welcome (and families are welcome to bring children as long as they supervise them).

Cost: FREE, with morning tea and activities in the park.

For more information, contact Charlie:

Phone: 0488 029 044
Email: charlie.bracey@reclink.org

Wheelchair tennis development camp

Group of people learning wheelchair tennis

Want to take your wheelchair tennis skills up a notch?

Tennis Australia is holding a wheelchair tennis development camp this June.

This is the second development camp in Victoria, which is part of a four camps being hosted this year.

Coaching will be provided for all ability levels.
Where: National Tennis Centre (level 2), Entrance D, Olympic Boulevard, Richmond VIC

When: Saturday 23 June, 12:30–4:30pm and Sunday 24 June, 10:30am-12:30pm

What to bring: racquet, tape, sports chair, drink bottle, lunch and snacks (you can buy lunch at the tennis centre).

To RSVP, contact Greg Crump before Friday 15 June, 2018:

Email: GCrump@Tennis.com.au
Phone: 0478 479 477.

BAM boozled!

BAM Allstars presents...BAM boozled!

BAM Allstars All Abilities is a Melbourne based dance and drama group for people with disabilities of all ages who love to dance and perform.

This year's BAM Allstars concert is called BAMboozled!

With around 100 students taking part, they are busily rehearsing and can't wait to take to the stage. 

When: Sunday 17 June, 2018 from 2pm

Where: Frankston Arts Centre

You can find more information about BAM Allstars on their website or book tickets to the Allstars concert online or by phone:
(03) 9784 1060.

Meet other people with spinal cord injury on the Mornington Peninsula

Spinal Injury Resource & Support Network Mornington Peninsula SCI Network

Living outside of Melbourne can be socially isolating for people with spinal cord injury (SCI).

The Mornington Peninsula SCI Network brings together like-minded people with disability, living on the Peninsula, so they can socialise and talk about issues important to them. 

The group meets once a month, with the next meeting scheduled for:

When: Monday 18 June, 2018 from 12:30pm

Where: Steeples Restaurant, Mornington

Family, friends and carers are also welcome.

RSVP by contacting:

Gerry on 0431 222 951 or gerryrussell01@google.com

Jeanette on 0417 343 204 or jwarner@live.com.au 

We're prepared for anything!

Four women wearing fire warden hats

Some of our team recently undertook fire warden training at Fire Equipment Services.

Seen here modelling their new warden hats and ready for any emergency are Lyn, Anne, Melanie and Gweneth.

AFL Wheelchair open skills sessions

Man in a wheelchair holding a football

Have you been following the stories about the Victorian Wheelchair Football League (VWFL) and want to get involved?

It's never too late!

There are two open skills sessions coming up where you can try  AFL Wheelchair first hand and learn some of the skills.

You don't need any previous experience and we'll provide sports chairs if you don't have your own.

By taking part in these sessions, you also have the opportunity to be drafted to the VWFL mid-season.


  • Sunday 24 June, 2018
  • Sunday 29 July, 2018

Time: 11am-1pm

Where: Boroondara Sports Complex, 271C Belmore Road Balwyn North

Register your interest in coming along by filling out the online form.

If you have any questions, you can email Ayden Shaw or call him on (03) 9473 0133.

National Disability Sports Conference

National Disability Sports Conference

We're very excited to announce our first ever National Disability Sports Conference (NDSC).

As part of the National Sports Convention, the NDSC will bring together key representatives from the disability sector to showcase ways to create more opportunities for people with disability to engage in sport and recreation.

The NDSC will also explore how the sports industry is preparing for the full rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

When: Tues 17 - Wed 18 July, 2018
Where: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre, 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf

You can find more information on the NDSC, the confirmed speakers and topics and how to register on the National Sports Convention website.

If you or your organisation is interested in sponsoring the conference, please get in touch.

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