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Education and Employment

New initiatives to enhance independence and quality of life for persons with disabilities

Young men in wheelchairs

Grant funding totalling nearly $2.5 million will be extended to seven organisations to support projects that improve the economic and social wellbeing of persons with disabilities in Western Australia.

Disability Services Minister Don Punch today announced the successful recipients of funding under the first round of the McGowan Government’s $5 million ‘A Western Australia for Everyone: State Disability Strategy 2020-2030’ Innovation Fund.

The fund was established to stimulate innovative ways to enhance independence and quality of life for people with disability at home and in the community, including increasing employment opportunities.

Initiatives to be funded over the next two years include:

  • a food literacy and nutrition education program for people living with a disability that will build confidence around food knowledge, food choices and practical food preparation;
  • the development of resources including toolkits and specialised training sessions to support the inclusion of people with complex communication needs such as autism in WA communities;
  • a mentors and mentees project to increase the employment of people with disability in WA’s public sector;
  • a smartphone ‘app’ to improve the capacity of people with disability to experience safe sexual expression, healthy relationships and more participatory lives through education on relationships and sexuality; and
  • the establishment of post graduate qualifications in Positive Behaviour Support and Complex Communication Needs to build the capability of the disability sector to support people with complex communication needs.

The Innovation Fund is a key part of implementing the ‘A Western Australia for Everyone: State Disability Strategy 2020-2030’, which sets the foundation for building a more inclusive WA by empowering people with disability to participate meaningfully in all parts of society and to have the resources to do so.

Applications were invited for new and emerging initiatives or new approaches to existing initiatives to assist people with disability in continuing education, obtaining employment and growing their independence both at home and in the community.

“People with disability have the right to be engaged and empowered, and to live as they choose.” said Disability Services Minister Don Punch.

“The Innovation Fund was set up to have a focus on developing projects that creatively apply new knowledge, technologies or processes that improve inclusion, participation and independence to enable people with disability to live their best life.

“The whole community benefits when everyone has the opportunity to be included. Initiatives funded under the Innovation Fund will foster new and exciting ways to facilitate the inclusion and participation of people with disability in our community.

“I am delighted to see that the Innovation Fund is already stimulating creative thinking and building the capacity of people with disability, their family and their community.” said Disability Services Minister Don Punch.

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