Online forms and some online services will be unavailable from 8 pm to 11:59 pm on Thursday 1 December 2022.

International Day of People with Disability celebrates the achievements and contributions of the 4.4 million Australians with disability. This day raises awareness about the barriers that people with disability face, while encouraging greater understanding and inclusion in our community. The day is celebrated annually on 3 December.

Life Without Limits booklist

Check out our Life Without Limits booklist. This special collection of stories and memoirs is written by people with experience of disability, highlighting the importance of inclusion and diversity.

For more information, visit our Life Without Limits booklist page.

Boroondara Disability Action Plan

We are committed to making our community an inclusive and accessible place for everyone. We recently invited community feedback to inform the review and update of our Disability Action Plan. The aim was to ensure that the plan meets the current needs of our community and identifies opportunities to improve inclusion and access for people with disability. We look forward to sharing the draft plan in early 2023.

To keep informed about the refresh visit the Engage Boroondara Disability Action Plan page.

Boroondara access keys

Several Council venues offer access keys that include contextualised photos, access details, maps and sensory guides to make it as easy as possible for people of all abilities to enjoy the facilities. These guides can be read independently or shared with a friend, family member, carer or support worker to prepare for the visit.

Designed by Access Ability Australia, the aim of access keys is to decrease barriers, increase enablers, and provide accurate and convenient information about how to access these venues, regardless of ability.

Council facilities that have access keys include:

  • Boroondara Youth Hub
  • Kew Traffic School
  • Boroondara Sports Complex
  • Hawthorn Aquatic and Leisure Centre
  • Ashburton Pool and Recreation Centre.

Boroondara Social Stories

Social Stories aims to prepare people for social interaction by providing clear information about specific social situations. It can support people who may live with autism spectrum disorder, language disorders, social communication difficulties or cognitive delays and disability. It also aims to support parents, carers and educators.

Council facilities that have a social story include:

  • Boroondara Youth Hub Social Story
  • Kew Traffic School Social Story
  • Ashburton Pool and Recreation Centre Swimming Lesson Social Story
  • Hawthorn Aquatic and Leisure Centre Swimming Lesson Social Story
  • Boroondara Sports Complex Gymnastics Lesson Social Story.

Stories from Boroondara community members with disability

Jack Hall

Jack Hall is a Boroondara local, who volunteers his time in the community and as a member of the Boroondara Community Disability Advisory Committee.

a person with downs syndrome wearing a high-vis vest and smiling

Jack Hall has lived in Boroondara his whole life and loves being involved in the community, regularly volunteering his time.

With a keen interest in horticulture, carpentry, dance, and cricket, Jack has participated in Emotion21, a dance and fitness program for children and young adults with down syndrome, since 2009. It’s through his involvement in Emotion21’s classes and concerts that Jack has made friends and learned new skills. In addition to enjoying the musicals and theatrical music, it has helped him “find confidence in myself”.

Jack describes helping animals when volunteering for Warriors 4 Wildlife as one of his most rewarding experiences. The volunteer-run organisation provides animal welfare, education, and wildlife conservation.

Jack also volunteers his time as a valuable member of the Boroondara Community Disability Advisory Committee, providing Council with advice and guidance on how to support people with disability.

“Being on the Committee I feel empowered – part of the community. I think it’s a compliment to speak out, sharing things you know… I learned lots of stuff and share things”.

Jack believes it’s important to celebrate the contributions and achievements of people with disability.

“I think it is important to celebrate people with disability… I think it helps the community understand a bit more,” Jack said.

For Jack, the path to an inclusive community is simple; “meet some new people with disability. Have a chat”.

Carla Lenarduzzi

Carla Lenarduzzi is a Melbourne-based tennis player who has represented Australia 3 times at the INAS Global Games.

a woman playing tennis

Boroondara local Carla Lenarduzzi started playing tennis at school. The invitation to a ‘come and try’ day sparked an immediate passion, and since then the game has taken her around the world.

Carla has represented Australia 3 times in the INAS Global Games, being ranked second in Australia for players with an intellectual disability and number 4 in the world. In 2018 she won Tennis Victoria’s Most Outstanding Athlete with a Disability award.

According to Carla, tennis provides an opportunity for continuous growth and improvement.

“The best thing is you can play tennis all your life and keep getting better and learn new shots…I like to strive every day to get better,” Carla said.

Her success in the sport has taken Carla to Sweden, Ecuador, UK, USA, Hungary, Poland and France, and allowed her to meet some of the world’s greatest players, including Roger Federer, Ash Barty, Alicia Molik, Pat Rafter and Lleyton Hewitt.

For Carla, celebrating International Day of People with Disability, as well as the contributions and achievements of people with disability, is important. She believes that sport – and tennis in particular – can create an inclusive and supportive environment for everyone.

“When you go there, nobody says ‘what are you doing here?’. They say ‘come and play doubles with us’ and they go for coffee and invite me.

“I can go into mainstream tennis and I can play in competitions with all different people and go and play in different clubs. It doesn’t matter whether I have a disability or not,” Carla said.

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