Media Release by Senator the Hon Kay Patterson

Helping schools celebrate International Day of People With a disAbility

Schoolchildren at more than 8000 schools around Australia will use a new resource kit to knock the ‘dis’ out of disAbility and focus on ability at the celebration of today’s International Day of People with a disAbility.

The Minister for Family and Community Services, Senator Kay Patterson, launched the kit today at Forrest Primary School in Canberra on the occasion of the United Nations International Day of People with a disAbility.

Today is an opportunity to honour and celebrate the achievements of people with disabilities.

“People around the world celebrate this day. It is timely that we all stop and think about people who have a disability and the challenges they face and how they tackle them. So let us knock the ‘dis’ out of disAbility and focus on ability,” she said.

Senator Patterson said the kit was designed to complement existing educational resources on disabilities and it provides suggestions for classroom activities, posters to help promote the day, and information on how to receive additional resources such as International Day balloons and stickers.

“With activity ideas such as playing sport with a body part restricted, painting without using your hands and learning the Braille alphabet, these kits provide the opportunity for children of all ages to explore the many aspects of diversity within our community,” she said.

“The kit has been produced to encourage all primary schools to join in their local community celebrations and to recognise the abilities and achievements of people with disabilities.

“The Australian Government is fully committed to maximising opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in their community through providing enhanced employment, education and training assistance.”

This year, the Australian Government, in consultation with NICAN (a national community information service), produced the teaching resource kit to help primary schools participate in these celebrations.

Schools may also register their International Day activities at so that other schools can draw inspiration from these and use them as a guide.

Related information
NICAN website