PROUD MOMENT: Compass Whitsundays staff Jody Flaherty and Monica Laws (far left) and Mel Brand, Sheila Cars and Tamara Uebergang (right), were joined at the Disability Action Week Family Fun Day by Proserpine's very own Paralympian David Nicholas, who was welcomed home with open arms by visitors at Saturday's event. 
Photo Sharon Smallwood / Whitsunday Times
PROUD MOMENT: Compass Whitsundays staff Jody Flaherty and Monica Laws (far left) and Mel Brand, Sheila Cars and Tamara Uebergang (right), were joined at the Disability Action Week Family Fun Day by Proserpine's very own Paralympian David Nicholas, who was welcomed home with open arms by visitors at Saturday's event. Photo Sharon Smallwood / Whitsunday Times

Paralympian at Disability Week

FRESH off the plane after his successful stint at London's 2012 Paralympic Games, Proserpine paracyclist David Nicholas took his gold and bronze medals to the Disability Action Week Family Fun Day last weekend.

The sporting hero, who was born with cerebral palsy in 1991, was welcomed to the event with open arms by organisers at Compass Whitsundays and Community Solutions.

Community Solutions managing director David Curd said Nicholas' presence had certainly helped to spread the message that "we as a community can create opportunities for everyone, including people with a disability".

"I guess as demonstrated by the recent Paralympics, people with a disability are capable of full participation in life and wonderful achievements," Mr Curd said.

The Disability Action Week Family Fun Day was officially opened by Whitsunday mayor Jennifer Whitney who said it was an honour to attend the event.

"There's been a lot of work and preparation in bringing this together and I think those people [involved] need to be congratulated because they already have very busy jobs," she said.

About 500 people passed through the gates at the Proserpine Showground which Compass Whitsundays service leader Monica Laws described as a success.

"It met everything that we wanted it to meet, [in fact] it's excelled. We wanted to get the whole community involved and aware and not just those that have been touched by disabilities. By looking around at everyone that was here today I believe we achieved that goal," she said.

Ms Laws said the day was not designed as a fundraiser for Compass, but gold coin entry donations would be put towards the creation of a sensory room at the organisation's Cannonvale headquarters.


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