Stories of interest

Heather Forsyth

Recently, Heather and Jon attended the Disability Support Worker Conference in Brisbane. They were involved in three presentations over the two days of the conference. The first presentation involved Heather presenting on how she has used her skills as a strong self-advocate to live life her way.

Disability Services Commissioner Arthur Rogers

Many Victorians who are involved in disability and in particular have interacted with the Department of Health and Human Services will most likely be very familiar with the name Arthur Rogers.

For those who haven’t heard of Arthur, he has held leadership roles within the Victorian Government in disability, social housing, and is currently the Victorian Disability Services Commissioner.

If you’ve ever had a chance to meet with Arthur, I’m sure you will agree he is a strong advocate for independent choice and the inclusion of people with a disability.

Robert Martin

The VALID Podcast provides regular commentary and updates on VALID’s work, and chats with other people who share their stories about disability. Our first podcast is an interview with Robert Martin MNZM.

Man introducing people to art exhibition at Having a Say Conference

Here are some photos of the ‘Having A Say Anniversary’ exhibition launch at the Having a Say Conference. It was a retrospective of award-winning works created by artists with disability from over a decade of the Having a Say conference. The show was supported by the Senior Practitioner, Office of Professional Practice and presented by VALID.

Self Advocate speaking at Having a Say Conference 2019

On the last day at the Having a Say conference, self-advocates (with the support of the VALID Self Advocacy team) ran a VALID self-advocacy network meeting.


Support Coordinator Darryl got in touch with VALID’s advocacy team as he could see Joe was socially isolated and lashing out at work when frustrated. Joe, Darryl and the advocate worked together in implementing his NDIS plan, enabling Joe to access the community and handle stressful situations at work. 

Terry and Anthony from VALID being being filmed

Film director Sarah Barton is developing a short Q &A documentary on people’s experiences with staff supports.Terry shared his experiences with disability service providers,  the good and the bad.  

metro train

Self Advocate, Damian Paterson, shared his experiences of accessing public transport when he took part in Metro Trains Q & A for Passenger Week.

amplifier with the word the words  SPEAK UP

Callum Lydiard took part in the Keys to Success training and has a new found confidence when it comes to speaking up for himself. 

Self Advocacy Forum members with Cancer Council Victoria and VALID staff member

In May Charissa from Cancer Council Victoria came to the VALID Self Advocacy Forum meeting to talk to the Forum members about what could be done to encourage more people with disabilities to be screened for cancer, specifically breast, bowel and cervical cancer.

Kevin Sarah and Janice

VALID's Administrative Assistant Simone Steven's reports on VALID's Annual General Meeting at the Aborigines Advancement League. 

panel of people in  front of an audience

As part of Passenger Week, Metro Trains Melbourne hosted a Q&A panel discussion consisting of self advocates who access metro trains on a regular basis.

hands holding hands

Lisa Smith rang the VALID advocacy team on behalf of her daughter Ann because Ann wanted to change her NDIS plan to better suit her needs and interests.Working together they were able to connect with a support coordinator who sort out services catering to Ann's needs and goals. 

Vision Australia Logo

Vision Australia called upon the State Government to follow in the footsteps of NSW by mandating, promoting and monitoring accessibility guidelines. Simone Stevens attended the Vision Australia Election Priorities event to hear what they had to say.

The official podcast of the Australasian Society for Intellectual Disability Sophia Tipping from the Living with Disability Research Centre talked to VALID’s Luke Nelson and Samson Hailu about strategies to support people with intellectual disability to vote

two women at a forum talking about abuse and neglect

Jon and Zoe have been working with a group of self-advocates and video production company Silverpod, to develop a series of new Community Awareness videos.

Frankston Peer Action Group with Linda Birney MP

On September 1st, members of VALID's Frankston Peer Action Group and the Southern Self Advocacy Network were invited to meet with Linda Burney (Federal Shadow Minister for Family and Social Services) and Peta Murphy (ALP candidate for the local federal seat of Dunkley) to discuss issues that were of importance to them.

Moe Peer Action Group

Valid is leading two significant community development projects in Victoria that have been shortlisted for the Pick My Project campaign. Pick My Project is a Victorian Government community grants initiative, with $30 million available to fund local projects. You can vote for the VALID projects and make your community a better and inclusive place to live.

Geelong Inclusive Art Project

An iconic public artwork celebrating inclusion and accessibility for Geelong

self advocacy member Andrew

Kerry and Mark from Legal Aid presented at the last Self Advocacy Forum to receive feedback on their new educational presentation called No More Fines.

Mother Thuc and Son William

Thuc Tran was worried about the future for her nine year old son, William. Thuc was aware that the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) was coming and she knew that she had to be prepared. The family support group Thuc attends reached out to VALID and the group took part in the NDIS - Families as Planning Partners course.