Sue is the winner of the Unsung Hero category in the 2018 HESTA Community Sector Awards.
As the founder of the National Organisation for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (NOFASD), Sue is recognised for her voluntary work supporting families struggling to manage and understand Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and for her tireless efforts in increasing awareness and prevention of the disability. For over 20 years, Sue has been instrumental in establishing the recognition of NOFASD.
“There is still not a lot of understanding about FASD in the wider community and in our education system,” Sue says. “Parents and carers often struggle to get their children understood because these children actually have undiagnosed brain damage. It can be a very lonely journey and having other parents with lived experience to talk to can be really helpful.”
Although she retired as Chair of the Board in 2015, Sue continues to volunteer and provide support to parents, carers and employees working with those living with FASD. Some of her contributions include running support groups, identifying support and resources to share with families, and ensuring the NOFASD’s website contains up-to-date information.
For the past 19 years, NOFASD has focused on prevention and Sue’s continuing voluntary contribution has led the way in building NOFASD’s social media presence through awareness campaigns that have been viewed by hundreds of thousands of Australians. For over 20 years, Sue has been instrumental in establishing the recognition of this disability in Australia.
Sue says the prize money from Award sponsors ME - the bank for you, will help NOFASD expand their support services and advocacy. “We want to increase the resources and support we can provide parents and children, and at the same time keep raising awareness, which will hopefully lead to less children born with FASD and more positive outcomes for those who are living with FASD.”