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Stephanie an Inspire Award nominee
Stephanie Habibis is one of those elite CFA members who has been part of a brigade since the day she was born. With Mum Niki the captain of St-Leonard – Indented Head for 12 years, Stephanie has always been included.
Stephanie has a mild intellectual disability, but this doesn’t stop her from being an active contributor within her brigade. She is well known within the community due to her friendly and outgoing personality and her involvement in virtually all brigade activities.
Stephanie has been nominated for an Inspire Awards®, an initiative of the Funds in Court (of the Supreme Court of Victoria) with the support of the Transport Accident Commission, Women with Disabilities Victoria and the Portland House Foundation.
The Victorian awards recognise a person 18 years or older who has a disability and is well respected in their field of work/interest and community.
This year CFA has been given its own award category – Best Achievement Award in the Country Fire Authority.
The Inspire Awards ceremony is on today, Wednesday 26 April 2017.
Steph continues to grow and develop her leadership skills and has grown in confidence with the support of her fellow brigade members. And what would they do without her?
“I sweep the floor of the engine bay, make sure there is enough stuff like serviettes, sauce, cleaning items on the barbecue trailer,” said Stephanie. “I like being responsible for getting ready to do the barbecues. It’s my job to give out the drinks.
“I help with writing shopping lists and doing shopping. I help to wash the fire trucks. I put labels on things so people know where they go.
“People sometimes forget to do things, so I remind them that we need to do it. Things like this are important to me and I like to make sure it gets done. People know that I will follow up with them if it’s something that’s important to me.”
Stephanie is a big fan of team work because jobs get done more easily. She particularly enjoys taking part in the annual Santa Run and the Good Friday Appeal for the Royal Children’s Hospital.
“I like working with other members of the brigade,” she said. “They help me a lot and I help them a lot too.
“I like talking to people and representing the brigade. I like doing good things for other people. I like handing out lollies to kids to make them happy. I collect money for the children’s hospital to help out the sick kids.”
St Leonard’s – Indented Head member John Fyfe nominated Stephanie for the award and is full of praise for all she contributes.
“Stephanie is an inspiration amongst the other brigade members,” he said, “and demonstrates that if you have a passion for something, you can achieve anything.
“Her involvement has brought out a level of compassion, patience and understanding with the other members, and an appreciation for giving things a go.”