"I want to share my message that even though you can have a disability you can still lead a very full and active life."
Eliza Ault-Connell
23
November
2018
|
22:00
Australia/Melbourne

An important day for celebrating and accepting disability

Eliza Ault-Connell was just 16 when she lost both legs to meningitis, but she never let it get in the way of living her life.

Meningitis ravaged her body causing her to have both legs amputated below the knees and she later lost some fingers.

Today, the successful wheelchair athlete who competed at Paralympic and Olympic Games is married with three kids and enjoys a physical life that includes taking part in marathons in her spare time.

Mrs Ault-Connell will share her words of inspiration at a celebratory event to mark International Day of People with a Disability on December 3.

Hosted by the Albury City Access Committee and Wodonga Community Access Advisory Group, the event will be a platform for people to share their experience of disability and is aimed at celebrating diversity and promoting rights of all people.

The IDPWD event will include guest speakers Mrs Ault-Connell, Alannah McKeown, Melissa Noonan and local community member Kylie Paull.

"I want to share my message that even though you can have a disability you can still lead a very full and active life," Mrs Ault-Connell said.

"I am married with three beautiful children and they are definitely one of the incredible things I have been able to do with my life.

"I did the New York marathon a couple of weeks ago and I am flying out the day after the International Day of People with a Disability event for a marathon in Singapore."

The IDPWD event kicks off from 11am at QEII Square, Albury and there will be live entertainment and a free community barbecue.

Mrs Ault-Connell said while her disability did not hold her back, some days it could take her longer to carry out tasks.

"Some days I am able to walk on prosthetics, while other days I am not able to walk at all and I will use my wheelchair," she said.

"That is just something that I accepted a very long time ago.

"It's not a disadvantage that I have to use a wheelchair, it can actually be an advantage that I if my legs are playing up that I can just jump into my wheelchair.

"I always like to look at the positives and not the negatives."

Mrs Ault-Connell is a personal trainer and works for Meningitis Centre Australia, a not-for-profit organisation that raises awareness and educates people about meningococcal disease.

Details.
What: International Day of People with a Disability Albury-Wodonga
When: Monday, December 3, from 11am to 2pm.
Where: QEII Square, Dean Street, Albury
Cost: Free

RSVP by 5pm on Wednesday, November 28 here or to Anthea Maher, Community Planning and Development Co-ordinator, Wodonga Council on (02) 6022 9343 or amaher@wodonga.vic.gov.au