QASA AGM a huge success
The QASA AGM was held on the 22nd September in Umhlanga, Durban.
The Friday evening was an opportunity to thank all the QASA partners and friends, and QASA's CEO, Ari Seirlis, handed certificates of recognition to many who have made a difference to the organisation. The evening was enjoyed by all in attendance and thank you to all those who supported the event.
On Saturday the 22nd September, the QASA Annual General Meeting 2012 was held for the members of the Association. The AGM was well attended by more than 60 members
Regional members presented their reports while the new board for 2012/13 was also announced.
The new board members were elected by QASA management at the management meeting after lunch. Raven Benny (QuadPara Association of the Western Cape) was re-elected as the Chairperson, Vusi Ndimeni (QuadPara Association of KwaZulu Natal) was re-elected Vice Chairperson, Cedric Hedgcock (QuadPara Association of KwaZulu-Natal) was re-elected as the QASA Treasurer and Anton Engelbrecht was re-elected as the fourth executive member.
One of QASA's main focus areas is that of developing the skills of persons with disabilities with the vision of developing the employment potential of the individual. Each year QASA allocates funds from its operating budget to pay for members to obtain a qualification in the field of their choice at an institution of their choice. The QASA bursary fund, the Neville Cohen Memorial Education Fund, was established in 1999 and since then has aided more than 70 members further their studies in a range of fields (from High School level to Post Graduate level).
The Neville Cohen Education Fund has aided many students with disabilities further their studies, obtain qualifications and enter the South African workforce.
Applicants must be members of QASA and must obtain the support of their regional QuadPara Association, who will forward the request to the QASA National Office for a decision by QASA management.
Driving Ambitions or ????
Solomon Sedibane, a paraplegic from Pretoria was one of our first applicants to obtain his driver's licence with Driving Ambitions. Using his own saving money and sponsorship from his employer, he recently bought a brand new Ford Fiesta. He had hand controls fitted and immediately hit the road to Polokwane, taking a friend with on a trip he has always dreamt of driving. With his newfound independence, Solomon says that he cannot stop smiling and feels that anything is now possible. "Driving Ambitions is the key for people living with disability, try it, you will become a hero of the heroes," he says. QASA would like to congratulate Solomon on buying his first car and wishes him all the best for the road ahead!
QASA DIGITAL VILLAGE COMPUTER TRAINING CENTRES CONTINUE TO GROW
A key focus of QASA is skills development and employment opportunities for people with disabilities. QASA's digital village computer training centres offer free computer training and employment solutions for persons with disabilities.
More than 800 people with disabilities have proved competent in our one week basic computer training at the three digital village computer training centres. All of the facilitators are people with disabilities.
Together with the basic computer training programme, the digital village computer training centres also offer a short and effective course on how to survive a job interview, telephone etiquette, typing skills, creation of own CV's and dress code for the work place. Our learners walk away not only with a competency certificate issued by Microsoft, but with confidence to approach the working world.
Mark Boucher spins for charity
Cricket legend Mark Boucher and Darren Simpson took part in a spinathon at the Zone in Rosebank to raise funds for QuadPara Association and Mark's "our Rhino in Safe Hands" campaign. Old Mutual's Greenlight Disability Cover and 94.7 sponsored this event and offered a once-in a lifetime "out of Africa" safari Bushveld experience and shopping prizes were given away on the day by the Zone of Rosebank.
"It's a great privilege for South Africa to be home to some of the world's most remarkable wildlife species and we all need to take our responsibility as their custodians very seriously and contribute our voices and our muscle towards protecting them," said Boucher.
SABAT hosts ANNUAL POWER WHEELCHAIR RACE
On Saturday the 27th October 2012 SABAT hosted the 8th SABAT Annual Power Wheelchair race. Twenty-five quadriplegics from the QuadPara Association of South Africa (QASA) raced around 1km of the Kyalami circuit for the glory of being crowned "The fastest Quad."
SABAT has had an ongoing relationship with QASA, sponsoring all members who use power wheelchairs with a pair of batteries per annum to keep them moving and mobile.
This project enables quadriplegics the opportunity to remain mobile through the use of SABAT batteries and thus save hundreds of Rands. The race event gives power wheelchair users an opportunity to re-discover the joy of competitiveness and feel the adrenalin that is often lost through disability.
QASA encourages quadriplegics and paraplegics to participate in sport and hobby activities and the SABAT POWER WHEELCHAIR RACE is a perfect platform for the users of power wheelchairs to demonstrate their toggle driving skills and enjoy the thrill of some "wind in the hair" competition.
Coming in first place for the men's race was Justin Ware, second was David Strachan and third was Rudolph Raath. First place for the woman's race was Debbie Barnard, second was Michelle Niemand and third was Dorothy Mabena.