Frankie represents an example of what an individual can do if given the opportunity.

“Sometimes we don’t recognize that they can do it,” Krishnani says, “and sometimes we don’t give them the opportunity to do it, and sometimes we don’t have the patience, because it’s just easier to take care of it than to let a child with a disability try to do it, because it takes so much more time. Frankie represents an example of what an individual can do if given the opportunity.”

“Most people saw limits for Frankie Antonelli. Parents Frank and Debbie saw potential.”

A really good read – its amazing to look around at Kate and her friends who have been given opportunities, by some wonderful parents, to thrive – and thrive they will. Doesn’t mean there aren’t set backs, health issues, frustrations – but if we just keep giving our young adults the opportunities to grow, grow they will!

Is there a growing positivity for people living with Down Syndrome?

Is there a growing positivity for people living with Down Syndrome?

There should be and it’s coming from people living with Down Syndrome and their buddies sharing their experiences, emotions, battles and accomplishments.

Just like Jason in this video he is his own advocate.

Just like Nathan we are all looking for the ability to live our lives, face our challenges, have our heroes, enjoy simple acts of friendship.

There is so much we can learn from each other – no matter what our background.

Take less for granted – congratulations Jason & Nathan.

PS Be yourself!

People with disabilities are significantly underrepresented in the Australia’s workforce

People with disabilities are significantly underrepresented in the Australia’s workforce

Just over a year ago my daughter Kate gained open employment with Valmont an event that has truly changed Kate’s life. Kate loves her job and has grown so much as a result.

This opportunity came as a result of an advert in the Down Syndrome NSW eNewsletter and after contacting Valmont we connected them with JobSupport who then worked with Valmont to develop a work plan and assess if Kate had the appropriate skills to meet the needs of Valmont.

We still remember getting the call that Kate “got the job”. Kate has never looked back.

I’m running in the City2Surf to raise awareness and to support Down Syndrome NSW in continuing to create opportunities like they did for Kate.

The facts are that people with disabilities are significantly underrepresented in Australia’s workforce and the gap in employment outcomes for people with and without disabilities has widened. A Deloitte Access Economics report stated “The economic modelling presented in this report suggests that closing the gap between labour market participation rates and unemployment rates for people with and without disabilities by one-third would result in a cumulative $43 billion increase in Australia’s GDP over the next decade in real dollar terms.” The full report with all the facts is here  Whilst this report is from 2011 evidence indicates little progress has been made since.

Disruptive Technologies Create the Perfect Storm in the For Purpose Sector

Disruptive Technologies Create the Perfect Storm in the For Purpose Sector

I was reading the McKinsey Report – McKinsey: The $33 Trillion Technology Payoff “A gallery of disruptive technologies” – and thinking these disruptive technologies can create a perfect storm in the For Purpose (= NFP) sector.

Mobile Internet

Smartphone penetration in Australia will reach 84% by the end of 2013.

  • It’s amazing when using public transport – everyone is on a mobile device!
  • How common is it that people are surfing and scanning their mobile devices whilst watching TV, sport etc.
  • This is not just the domain of the younger generation – think of the liberation for us 50+ and increasingly and importantly those with a disability and the disadvantaged who can have their world opened up.

Then further the latest research says that 64% of smartphone owners are now using their mobile devices to shop online, a number that has quadrupled since June 2010.

Putting this all together there is a tremendous opportunity that For Purpose organisations have to ride this wave – to utilise existing, simple to use, fit for purpose supporter engagement/donor management systems to drive.

Automation of Knowledge Work

Social Impact, Measuring Impact, Collective Impact are the buzz words that are accompanying the NDIS.

Another great opportunity in the For Purpose sector is to utilise technology to not only simplying and streamline the capture of information or “touch-points” but to turn this into impact based reporting for funders. The Mobile Internet again plays an important enabling role in reducing the cost and complexity of traditional applications in this space.

Over the coming weeks I will share some stories, case studies and potential risks based on what’s possible in the here and now.


The KURINGGAI CHASE – a run for a cause.

The KURINGGAI CHASE – a run for a cause.

At the beginning of last year I got together with Barry Easy OAM and we formed an idea to create a local fun run and walk that would bring together the community that supported the Special Olympics Upper North Shore program. Backed by Barry’s great vision and experience I took up chairing the organising committee and was quickly joined by my son Josh on the committee, looking after event operations. The event is on the 17th March at North Wahroonga – less than 2 weeks to go!

The KURINGGAI CHASE helps raise awareness and much needed funds to continue to:

  • Run our weekly schools program where we encourage and assist children with an intellectual disability to take the first steps to participate and become active in sport.
  • Our weekly sports program that provides the 1 on 1 coaching needed to build confidence and develop the skills for greater independence.
  • Provide pathways for competition or to simply participate in regular sport to promote an active, healthy lifestyle and a feeling of belonging as part of the local community.

Belinda Loves to Run is just one story of the difference the programs make.

The program not only provides great outcomes as described above for our kids, but for young adults like my daughter Kate, it provides an important opportunity to maintain and develop friendships and independence – Kate finished school last year and as well as doing job placements has started working as a volunteer coach for the schools program which is pretty cool. That’s Kate in the picture – on the far left.

I hope you can assist in some way by participating, by sponsoring my family team, the “Sydney Simmo’s” or Liking us on Facebook.

We have used the best possible technology for Not For Profits from Blackbaud for this event in Everyday Hero Peer2Peer fundraising and eTapestry CRM.


To register or find more information please go to

IMG - Version 2