Please select your home edition
Edition
Jeanneau AUS Sunfast 728x90

Changing attitudes changing lives

by Stephen Collopy on 16 Feb
Dan Fitzgibbon and Leisl Tesch training on Pittwater Stephen Collopy
The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club prides itself on inclusion of all in the sport of sailing and on Friday 10 February the club along with ANZ Bank hosted a charity lunch for the Attitude Foundation raising awareness for social integration of those living with disabilities.

More than 80 guests attended the lunch, chairman and founder of the Attitude Foundation and former Australian Disability Commissioner, Graeme Innes opening the talks presenting the aim behind the Foundation and outlining the social change which needs to occur to promote better lives for those living with disabilities.

“The Foundation aims to promote change through their own stories, stories of those doing work, doing sport and doing life. Said Grahame Innes.

“These stories will help create a better understanding of what it’s like living with a disability that will change people attitudes and remove the barriers to promote inclusion in both society and the workforce. “Graeme Innes said.

Five time Paralympic medallist in both wheelchair basketball and sailing, Liesl Tesch spoke of the importance of the role sport plays in the promotion of change.

Coming from an accident when Liesl was 19 she told of how her discovery of wheelchair basketball pushed her through living a life with a disability.

This passion for wheelchair basketball led to Liesl winning silver at the Sydney 2000 Paralympics, Silver in 2004 Athens Paralympics and Bronze in the 2008 Beijing Paralympics. From there her passion and competitive spirit propelled her into the sport of sailing.

Meeting Daniel Fitzgibbon at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club the pair teamed up and with the help of key members developed the award winning Integrated disAbled Sailing Program (IdS) which strives to promote sailors of all walks of life to be integrated into the club’s regular sailing program.

Daniel and Liesl won gold medals at the 2012 London Paralympics and the 2016 Rio Paralympics along several world and national championships in between.



Amongst all these sporting achievements and a career as a high school teacher Liesl still found the time to promote the message of inclusion through sport in countries like Kenya, South Africa and Lao along with doing work within the local community which led to the foundation of the organisation SportMatters which goes by the motto “For Everyone. For Life.”

Liesl expressed her gratitude for all the support she and Daniel Fitzgibbon have received without which they couldn’t have achieved their goals.

“Sport is a great medium for social inclusion, I had knowledge that we could create new things which has driven me to do what I’ve done but it couldn’t have happened without the support from others, I do thank the RPAYC for all the support and effort from all the volunteers and members, it’s been an incredible contribution to our two gold medals.” Liesl concluded.

As ambassadors of the IdS program, Paralympic gold medallists, Leisl Tesch and Daniel Fitzgibbon have expanded the program to branch out to other organisations and community groups including Sailability Crystal Bay and Australia’s Soldier On organisation which assists in integrating the country’s veterans into civilian life.

As evident through the work of the Attitude Foundation and the RPAYC it is important for identities like Graeme Innes, Liesl Tesch and Daniel Fitzgibbon continue telling their stories to create effective change.

For the bigger picture the Attitude Foundation seeks to spread the message and encourage others to tell their story. In doing so the Foundation is raising money to produce a TV series to air on the ABC to show the stories told by those living disabilities. To donate visit www.attitude.org.au

For more information about the RPAYC IdS program visit www.rpayc.com.au

X-Yachts AUS X4 - 660 - 1Harken AUS HL Snatch Block 660x82Collinson and Co

Related Articles

Nominations open for Maritime Medal
Kevin Anderson has welcomed the opening of nominations for the biennial Maritime Medal Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Roads, Maritime and Transport Kevin Anderson has welcomed the opening of nominations for the biennial Maritime Medal, recognising the outstanding and sustained contributions of individuals and organisations to the boating and maritime community of New South Wales.
Posted today at 5:53 am
2017 Australian Marine Industry Award winners announced
Australian Marine Industry last night awarded business excellence in industry at annual Awards Gala Presentation Dinner After a successful first day at the ASMEX 2017 conference, the Australian Marine Industry last night awarded business excellence in the industry at the annual Awards Gala Presentation Dinner held in Sanctuary Cove. Over 260 guests gathered to acknowledge and support the outstanding achievements of businesses in the Australian Marine Export, Superyacht and Commercial Marine Industries.
Posted today at 4:21 am
Come visit us at the Sanctuary Cove Boat Show 2017
Come visit us @ The Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show - 25 - 28 May 2017. Come visit us @ The Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show - 25 - 28 May 2017.
Posted on 23 May
Old4New Van notches up 100,000km and 20,000 lifejackets
Minister for Roads Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey today announced the Old4New life jacket programme Minister for Roads Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey today announced the Old4New life jacket programme had exchanged more than 20,000 old lifejackets for new ones, spreading the ‘wear a lifejacket’ message.
Posted on 23 May
Collinson FX Market Commentary - May 20-21 - All currencies rise
AUD hitting 0.7450, while the NZD traded above 0.6900 again. The EUR pushed through 1.1200, while the GBP broke above 1.3000, despite weak economic confidence in the Eurozone. The weak reserve enabled commodity currencies, with the AUD hitting 0.7450, while the NZD traded above 0.6900 again. Trumps tour will provide Geo-Political points of issue but may calm the domestic politic.
Posted on 22 May
Marina Awards finalists announced
Finalists for the Marina Industries Association (MIA) Club Marine Marina Awards have been announced. Finalists for the Marina Industries Association (MIA) Club Marine Marina Awards have been announced. The Awards are for the 2017/18 period and are based upon performance over the previous financial year period. MIA President, Andrew Chapman CMM, said the Awards have been very well supported by industry both in Australia and internationally.
Posted on 22 May
AIMEX will host Competitive Tendering & Capability Statement Seminars
AIMEX, will be hosting a series of highly informative/practical Competitive Tendering and Capability Statement Seminars AIMEX, Superyacht Australia and the Australian Commercial Marine Group are excited to announce they will be hosting a series of highly informative and practical Competitive Tendering and Capability Statement Seminars throughout June 2017.
Posted on 20 May
38 South Boat Sales – New Glastron dealers
We are pleased to announce that 38 South Boat Sales are the new dealers for Glastron in Victoria and South Australia Glastron is part of the RecGroup that was acquired by the Jeanneau group nearly three years ago to capitalise on the extensive dealer network of both groups.
Posted on 19 May
ASMEX is officially sold out!
AIMEX are excited to announce that on the week leading up to the ASMEX Conference, we are officially sold out!!! AIMEX are excited to announce that on the week leading up to the Australian Superyacht, Marine Export and Commercial Marine Industry (ASMEX) Conference, we are officially sold out!!!
Posted on 19 May
Yacht Racing Forum announces partnership with Spinlock
Yacht Racing Forum announces partnership with renowned expert in ropeholding and technical safety equipment Spinlock. The Yacht Racing Forum is pleased to announce a two years partnership with world renowned expert in ropeholding and technical safety equipment Spinlock.
Posted on 18 May