Awards recog­nise high achiev­ers

Matamata Chronicle - - News - Nom­i­na­tion forms can be down­loaded from the web­site at­ti­tudeawards.org and emailed to awards@at­ti­tudeawards.org or posted to At­ti­tude Awards 2013, PO Box 9071 Newmarket, Auck­land 1149. Nom­i­na­tions close at 5pm on Wed­nes­day, July 3.

Nom­i­na­tions are open for the sixth At­ti­tude Awards, an an­nual black tie gala event that cel­e­brates high achiev­ers who have taken on the world and its per­cep­tion of dis­abil­ity.

En­trants range from supreme ath­letes to lesser known New Zealan­ders whose fam­ily, friends and neigh­bours think they should be recog­nised for their courage, per­se­ver­ance, or sup­port for peo­ple who live with dis­abil­i­ties.

At­ti­tude Awards Trustee Dan Buck­ing­ham, a mem­ber of the elite Wheel Black team, says suc­cess for the award win­ners means more than just win­ning a medal or prize.

It’s about per­cep­tions.

‘‘ In six years of the awards we’ve had win­ners who chal­lenge what peo­ple think it means to have a dis­abil­ity,’’ said Dan.

‘‘We look for the sto­ries of courage and de­ter­mi­na­tion that change the way peo­ple view what is achiev­able with a dis­abil­ity – that’s what the At­ti­tude Awards are about.’’

Rob­bie Fran­cis, who won the At­ti­tude ACC Supreme Award in 2009, says the award has helped define her life.

Shortly af­ter the win she trav­elled to Is­rael to study In­ter­na­tional Con­flict Res­o­lu­tion and

ul­ti­mately chang­ing Me­di­a­tion. The ex­pe­ri­ence opened doors to a dif­fer­ent world that chal­lenged her and pushed her to de­cide that one day she would help with peace ini­tia­tives through­out the world.

Par­a­lympic swim­mer So­phie Pas­coe won the At­ti­tude Sport Per­former of the Year Award in 2011.

She went on to win a string of gold medals at the Lon­don Par­a­lympics last year and has be­come an in­spi­ra­tion to peo­ple liv­ing with dis­abil­i­ties.

There are seven cat­e­gories in the awards: Sport Per­former of the Year, Courage in Sport, Artis­tic Achieve­ment, Youth, Spirit of At­ti­tude, ACC Em­ployer Award and the Mak­ing a Dif­fer­ence Award.

The At­ti­tude ACC Supreme Award is se­lected from the cat­e­gory win­ners.

New ACC chief ex­ec­u­tive Scott Pickering says he is re­ally look­ing for­ward to at­tend­ing his first At­ti­tude Awards.

‘‘The spirit of the awards, which is about find­ing strength from within and from those around us, res­onates with us all,’’ Mr Pickering said.

‘‘It’s es­pe­cially in­spir­ing for us here at ACC, where our role is to give peo­ple the best pos­si­ble sup­port af­ter in­jury, to help them meet their re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and life goals.’’

ACC is the prin­ci­pal spon­sor of the awards, and Lion Foun­da­tion, New Zealand on Air, West­pac, Drake Me­dox, Air New Zealand, Min­istry of Health, Wayne Fran­cis Char­i­ta­ble Trust and the IHC Foun­da­tion are among other spon­sors con­tin­u­ing their sup­port.

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