15

May

Deb Gray - Guest Speaker Print E-mail
Deb Gray is a proud mother of one and has raised her by her self with no husband. She has driven from Melbourne to Darwin in a bash car, gone sky diving and has done all of these things with no arms and 2 deformed legs and only standing 3ft and 8 ½ inches tall. She was born in 1957 and was born with no arms, 2 legs with no knee in her right leg and with a knee in the other but only with a 3 inch thigh bone. Her mother gave birth to her in 1957 and Deb is believed to be a Thalidomide baby.

Her mother refused to give her up to an institution when she was born and took her home to raise her herself. She was heavily criticized about bringing such a disabled baby home and not giving her up to an institution where she would be looked after. But mothers know best and Deb stands up for her mothers actions. She believes that no matter what you are given you make the most of it and you use it. Deb has been an inspiration to a lot of people including me now. She has done so much for charities in her time. She was kind enough to come and talk to us about her life and the challenges and struggles that she faces in her life.

When she first started school she was forced to wear artificial limbs from prep all the way up to year 6. She was forced to use these arms to write instead of using her foot which she can write quite well with. I will even admit that her foot writing is even more neat then my hand writing. When she started high school she was not forced to wear these limbs but was told to use a type writer instead of writing. By year 10 she did not use the type writer at all and simply just put a book on top of it and wrote. At the end of year 10 she was never encouraged to continue school and dropped out and started working at a switch board.  She was a victim of work place discrimination and was never allowed to progress in her future jobs.

She has become so well adapted that I’m amazed at what she can do. She is an inspiration to us all and I wish her the best.

By Cameron M

 

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School For Student Leadership

School for Student Leadership is a Victorian Department of Education and Training (DET) initiative offering a unique residential education experience for year nine students. The curriculum focuses on personal development and team learning projects sourced from students' home regions. There are three campuses in iconic locations across Victoria. The Alpine School Campus is located at Dinner Plain in the Victorian Alps. Snowy River Campus is near the mouth of the Snowy River at Marlo in east Gippsland. The third site is adjacent to Mount Noorat near Camperdown in Victoria’s Western District, and is called Gnurad-Gundidj. After consultation with the local aboriginal community, this name represents both the indigenous name of the local area and an interpretation of the statement "belonging to this place".
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Our school community acknowledges the Gunaikurnai, Bidawel and Gundijmara people as the traditional custodians of the land upon which our school campuses are built. We pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, their Elders past and present, and especially whose children attend our school.