Leading By Example

Wed, 1 December 2021

Growing Up DisabledThis episode is presented by Jade Taylor, a WWDA Youth Advisory Group member, who chats with Carly Findlay about the nuts and bolts of becoming a prominent disabled activist and writer in Australia. 

Jade and Carly talk about Carly’s journey to becoming an activist, what it means to identify as having a disability, the impact of social media on the lives of people with disability and more.

Carly Findlay OAM is the author of the memoir Say Hello and the editor of Growing Up Disabled in Australia - a groundbreaking anthology of disabled people’s stories. Contributors range from young people to elders in the community, First Nations people, culturally and linguistically diverse people, people who are from the LGBTIQA + communities, people from the city, regional and rural areas and everywhere in between, and different impairments and access needs. The way these stories are told is also diverse – there are essays, poetry, artwork and interviews. One contributor wrote their poems at an intellectual disability conference. Another sent an excerpt of their children’s book. Carly sat down and interviewed one contributor for over an hour – there were tears and laughter.

Carly says, “It is important that disabled people tell our own stories. Often we are left out of media, policy, employment and the arts – non-disabled people speak for us. But “nothing about us without us”! Our own voices matter. And this book centres disabled people – each contributor tells their story on their own terms."

Carly was named as one of Australia's most influential women in the Australian Financial Review and Westpac 100 Women of Influence Awards for 2014. She received the 2010 and 2013 Yooralla Media Awards for Best Online Commentary for her body of disability-focused writing. (She declined the 2014 Yooralla Media Award for ethical reasons.) She also won the best personal blog category for Kidspot Voices of 2013, and the 2013 BUPA Health Activist award for Positive Life Change. She's also been a finalist in the Best Australian Blogs competition in 2011, 2012 and 2014. 

She has been published by SBS, The Guardian, Daily Life, The ABC, Mamamia, Frankie magazine, the ABC, The Guardian, The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald, CNN and Vogue and BlogHer. She has also contributed to Rebecca Sparrow's book Ask Me Anything and Tara Moss' book Speaking Out.

You can find this program here WWDA Youth Network Podcast: We Can All Be Leaders